X

Sony Alpha SLT-A99V photo samples

The camera delivers excellent image quality, though it flags when the light gets too low.

LoriGruninNewHeadshot.jpg
LoriGruninNewHeadshot.jpg

Lori Grunin

See full bio

35437773_SIC1_620.jpg
1 of 16 Lori Grunin/CNET

Noise and JPEG processing

The A99 has excellent JPEG processing and noise reduction, at least up through ISO 1600. Photos are extremely clean through ISO 400, and you can start to see some slight edge artifacts appearing at ISO 800. There's a noticeable jump in noise suppression between ISO 1600 and ISO 3200, regardless of how bright the scene is.
35437773_SIC1a_620.jpg
2 of 16 Lori Grunin/CNET

High ISO sensitivity JPEGs

Although Sony treats it as a native ISO sensitivity, ISO 25,600 looks like what other cameras would classify as an expanded range.
35437773_SIC3_620-red.jpg
3 of 16 Lori Grunin/CNET

Bright, saturated reds

The camera seems to handle saturated reds well, although I couldn't find a test shot situation in perpetually cloudy NYC to produce intense highlight areas.
(1/100 sec, f4.5, ISO 100, multisegment metering, AWB, 24-70mm lens at 70mm)
35437773_SIC2_620-80.jpg
4 of 16 Lori Grunin/CNET

ISO 80 JPEG

At low and medium ISO sensitivities (and with a good lens), the A99 produces well-resolved detail and smooth tonality even into out-of-focus areas.
(1/100 sec, f4.5, ISO 80, spot metering, AWB, 24-70mm lens at 70mm)
35437773_SIC4_620-100.jpg
5 of 16 Lori Grunin/CNET

ISO 100 JPEG

Just an example of the low-ISO sensitivity quality.
(1/60 sec, f4.5, ISO 100, multisegment metering, AWB, 135mm STF lens)
35437773_SIC5_620-200.jpg
6 of 16 Lori Grunin/CNET

ISO 200 JPEG

Like most neutral camera profiles, Sony pulls back the in-camera sharpening as well as the saturation and contrast.
(1/100 sec, f5.6, ISO 200, multisegment metering, Cloudy WB, 135mm STF lens)
35437773_SIC6_620-400.jpg
7 of 16 Lori Grunin/CNET

ISO 400 JPEG

Images still look clean at ISO 400, as you'd expect from a full-frame camera.
(1/100 sec, f5.6, ISO 400, multisegment metering, AWB, 135mm STF lens)
35437773_SIC7_620-800.jpg
8 of 16 Lori Grunin/CNET

ISO 800 JPEG

This shot usually starts to show some softness on the edges, but the A99 acquits itself well.
(1/50 sec, f2.8, ISO 800, spot metering, AWB, 24-70mm lens at 70mm)
35437773_SIC11_620-1600.jpg
9 of 16 Lori Grunin/CNET

ISO 1600 JPEG

You can see some noise-reduction artifacts in dark areas starting at ISO 1600, but bright areas still look pretty good.
(1/50 sec, f3.2, ISO 1600, spot metering, AWB, 24-70mm lens at 45mm)
35437773_SIC12_620-1600nonr.jpg
10 of 16 Lori Grunin/CNET

ISO 1600, no noise reduction

While the color noise at ISO 1600 isn't bad it's a little more prevalent than in images from the D800. It's about the same as the 5D Mark III.
(1/40 sec, f2.8, ISO 1600, spot metering, AWB, 24-70mm lens at 55mm)
35437773_SIC13_620-1600rj.jpg
11 of 16 Lori Grunin/CNET

ISO 1600, raw vs. JPEG

Sony's JPEG processing is very good; I couldn't obtain less noisy results by processing the raw.
(1/40 sec, f2.8, ISO 1600, spot metering, AWB, 24-70mm lens at 50mm)
35437773_SIC14_620-3200rj.jpg
12 of 16 Lori Grunin/CNET

ISO 3200, raw vs. JPEG

At ISO 3200 you can start trading off grain for mushiness by processing the raw files rather than shooting JPEG.
(1/80 sec, f2.8, ISO 3200, spot metering, AWB, 24-70mm lens at 35mm)
35437773_SIC15_620-12800.jpg
13 of 16 Lori Grunin/CNET

ISO 12800 JPEG

I wouldn't shoot ISO 12,800 for print or full-size display, but it's fine for scaled-down sizes.
(1/50 sec, f8, ISO 12800, spot metering, AWB, 24-70mm lens at 24mm)
35437773_SIC10_620-color.jpg
14 of 16 Lori Grunin/CNET

Color

Shooting with the Neutral Creative Style (these shots) yields pretty accurate color; the default is Standard, though.
35437773_SIC16_620-colorcs.jpg
15 of 16 Lori Grunin/CNET

Creative Styles

The Standard (default) Color Style increases contrast and saturation to a point where hues shift a little, though I didn't see a notable loss of shadow detail.
35437773_SIC17_620-highlight.jpg
16 of 16 Lori Grunin/CNET

Highlight and shadow recovery

The A99 does a very good job of preserving detail in raw files of blown-out highlight areas. Underexposed or deep shadow areas can't seem to be recovered without introducing more color noise than competing cameras, though.
(1/250 sec, f2.8, ISO 200, spot metering, AWB, 24-70mm lens at 70mm)

More Galleries

2022's Best TV Shows You Can't Miss on Netflix, HBO, Disney Plus and More

More Galleries

2022's Best TV Shows You Can't Miss on Netflix, HBO, Disney Plus and More

94 Photos
2023 Honda CR-V Is Coming This Summer

More Galleries

2023 Honda CR-V Is Coming This Summer

4 Photos
'Stranger Things' Stars Then and Now: Wow, They've Really Grown Up

More Galleries

'Stranger Things' Stars Then and Now: Wow, They've Really Grown Up

40 Photos
The 40 Best Games on Nintendo Switch

More Galleries

The 40 Best Games on Nintendo Switch

41 Photos
Movies Coming in 2022 From Marvel, Netflix, DC and More

More Galleries

Movies Coming in 2022 From Marvel, Netflix, DC and More

80 Photos
2023 Acura Integra Is a New Age Sport Compact

More Galleries

2023 Acura Integra Is a New Age Sport Compact

56 Photos
Maserati MC20 Cielo Is a Gorgeous Italian Spyder

More Galleries

Maserati MC20 Cielo Is a Gorgeous Italian Spyder

70 Photos