Sony a (Alpha) DSLR-A100 Camera Makes Its Debut

Sony's (alpha) DSLR-A100 system features a  10.2-megapixel APS CCD image sensor andwill be introduced with 19 high-quality Sony lenses. All will be compatible with most of the former Konica-Minolta Maxxum mount lenses. The system will include a wide range of accessories as well. Sony has developed a new Dynamic Range Optimizer image analysis technology that is said by the company to provide exceptional picture quality and natural color reproduction, along with a new Bionz image processing engine. This new engine supports a continuous burst mode for fast-action shooting and performs intelligent power management.



The DSLR-A100 camera is engineered to combat blurry pictures through high light sensitivity (up to ISO 1600) and Super SteadyShot image stabilization, a Sony technology that shifts the image sensor to compensate for camera movement. Because Super SteadyShot is built into the camera body, all compatible telephoto, wide-angle, standard and macro lenses are automatically image-stabilized. This also allows from three to 3-1/2 stops of latitude in exposure, which supports hand-held shooting at longer shutter speeds than would otherwise be possible.

The a (alpha) DSLR-A100 will be the only D-SLR camera that can optimize dynamic range, meaning the range from highlights to shadows, including gain and contrast, through in-camera hardware processing.

Sony’s Dynamic Range Optimizer (DRO) analyzes the captured image data and instantly determines the best exposure and color tonality of an image before JPEG compression. Unlike software optimization of a processed image, DRO is performed in the hardware. It is the first hardware-based DRO solution with the speed required for high-speed shooting.

The high-speed Bionz image processing engine will offer high-speed burst shooting at up to three frames per second continuously, at 10.2-megapixels and the finest JPEG compression. The new camera is also said to have a long battery life. The supplied InfoLithium battery gives you up to 750 shots per full charge, depending on usage patterns and environmental conditions.

Dust collects on the image sensor, usually when lenses are changed, and appears as annoying spots in photos, which then need to be retouched later. Sony’s new system offers a novel, two-pronged approach to fighting dust.

The camera’s CCD image sensor has an indium tin oxide coating to avoid static build-up so that dust does not readily adhere. Additionally, when you turn the camera on or off, an anti-dust feature is activated to literally shake off dust particles.

Sony is continuing its long-standing relationship with Carl Zeiss to deliver superior optical performance for the alpha camera system. The two companies have co-developed three lenses, including an ultra-wide, 16-80 mm Vario-Sonnar T zoom model and two fixed focal length telephoto models ? a Planar T 85 mm and Sonnar T 135 mm.

The system will also be supported with a full range of accessories, including a line-up of flashes, cable releases, rechargeable battery packs and several styles of carrying cases.
The camera also features eye-start auto focus, which starts focusing your picture before you even press the shutter; a 2.5-inch Clear Photo LCD Plus screen for wide-angle viewing and exceptional color reproduction; JPEG and RAW file format support; and a comfortable camera grip with easily-accessible function and mode dials.

There is a slot for CompactFlash Type I/II and Microdrive media cards. The camera also accepts Memory Stick PRO and Memory Stick PRO Duo media cards through a supplied adaptor.

The DSLR-A100 camera body will be available for about $900. The DSLR-A100K kit, which includes the camera body along with an 18-70mm zoom lens, will be available for about $1,000. Both ship in July and will be available at SonyStyle.com, Sony Style retail stores (www.sonystyle.com/retail), and authorized dealers nationwide. Pre-orders begin online today at www.sony.com/dslr.

Full-service product support for the DSLR-A100 system will be available at http://esupport.sony.com. Sony is also offering service to former Konica-Minolta customers. More service information is available at www.esupport.sony.com/EN/KM/service.html.
For online support, such as drivers and other documents, former Konica-Minolta users can also visit http://ca.konicaminolta.com/support/index.html.

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