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  • No more SONY DSLRs!

    The Full Frame SLT-a99 is the new interchangeable lens camera coming down the pike for SONY. It is not the replacement a9xx model for the Optical Viewfinder DSLR a900/a850, but a complete separation of the optical path to your eye. The optical image comes through the lens, goes through a translucent mirror and winds up on a full-time FF sensor, which is then transmitted to a small LCD in the viewfinder, that your eye will see. This is an electronic viewfinder and it has some real time issues that optical viewfinders (OVF) do not.

    SONY's new 36MP sensor is planned to be placed in this new SLT camera, but it is also going to another manufacturer for use in their OVF DSLR. That manufacturer is Nikon and it is already in their new model, the D800. In effect, if you want the SONY upgrade DSLR... you will need to change mounts to get it, now. SONY no longer makes one of their own.

    Maybe this image will help:

    "SONY Inside"

    Strange days ahead, I'm afraid.
    Last edited by DonSchap; 03-12-2012, 03:36 AM.
    Don Schap
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  • #2
    Why does it need a mirror if there's no optical view finder?
    [ԯ] marcus
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    • #3
      Originally posted by dakwegmo View Post
      Why does it need a mirror if there's no optical view finder?
      More or less so you can get a constant phase-detect autofocus with a live view from the sensor. Other DSLRs have to use slower contrast based AF while in live view or when shooting video, and mirrorless systems only have contrast detect AF.

      Sony's latest interchangeable lens cameras, the SLT Alpha A33 and A55 represent a significant technological milestone - not just for Sony but for the enthusiast camera market as a whole.

      The company has rejected the traditional DSLR design and instead created a hybrid that, like a compact camera, is from the ground up built around live view, but one that is also capable of offering full-time DSLR-style phase-detection autofocus. The combination means they can offer features such as phase-detection AF during movie recording and extremely fast continuous shooting rates (10 frames per second on the A55), previously unthinkable at this price.

      This is made possible by adopting an approach that has more in common with a mirrorless camera (like the Panasonic G2, for example) than an SLR by removing the bits that pretty much define such cameras: the optical viewfinder and moving mirror.

      The designation 'SLT' stands for single lens translucent and it's the 'translucent' bit that's the key to what differentiates these new models both from conventional DSLRs and mirrorless interchangeable lens cameras. The SLTs do have mirrors, but they're mirrors that let the majority of the light pass straight through to the sensor, rather than having to swing out of the way to allow exposure. As a result they are fixed in position, always reflecting a portion of the light emerging from the back of the lens onto a phase-detection AF array housed in the top of the camera. (A newly-developed 15-point array in the case of these two cameras).
      Sony SLT Alpha A55 In-depth Review: Digital Photography Review
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      • #4
        Your image is very misleading: While Sony does make the base chip that makes up the sensor, there are dozens of changes made to it before it's put into a Nikon body.
        I am responsible for what I say; not what you understand.
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        • #5
          The image is a "cover-up" of a very strange event in SONY/Nikon relations. The SONY sensor is only available in the Nikon DSLR for OVF purposes. If you try to find it in a SONY body... you will only have a EVF to look at... not through. Nothing misleading... except that Nikon never mentions their use of the "SONY sensor" in their newest camera material or promotion. Who is fooling who?
          Don Schap
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          • #6
            I was bummed...

            Because my 35mm SLRs are Minolta, when I got a digital SLR I went with Sony, since I could not afford to replace all my lenses. Last year I got the a500, which is a decent camera, but I wanted to upgrade. I decided to try the a65, and ended up having to return it. I don't care how good they say it is, the EVF did not cut it for me at all. I do a lot of insect macro work insects which requires manual focus, and the image I got was so jerky and so high contrast I could hardly stand shooting with it at all. I could not see the finer details in what I was shooting, and after a couple of hours it was actually hurting my eye. I am now afraid that if I want an affordable upgrade, I am going to have to switch brands and start over with acquiring lenses. I am bummed...

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            • #7
              Hate to say so, but historically speaking if you've been a long time Sony customer you will have been pretty used to abuse. Despite making a lot of really neat electronics, as a whole their lines have been riddled with gaffs and odd idiosyncrasies that invariably put off their customers.

              Despite how much it irritates consumers, Sony keeps pushing their proprietary formats, and though the examples in that link are old it continues today, see the absurdly priced memory stick they'll force you to buy with their new portable gaming system, instead of a standard SD card everyone else and their mother uses for a fraction of the price.

              Having repaired some Sony Viao PC's under warranty coverage, wow, no shortage of proprietary designs there either. Can't count the number of times I looked at how they put their machines together and shook my head in amazement. Their software design is no better, unintuitive and aggravating. Oh, and let's not forget how they exposed all that personal and credit card information from anyone using their PS3 console by storing it in a zero-secured unencrypted state.

              Sometime soon I'll probably give in and get a PS3, since the prices now aren't nearly so outrageous as the launch price, and most of the kinks have been worked out. And things like the NEX-7 look awfully tempting. But there's always some niggling doubt in my head. "It's Sony. You know how they can be."
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