CNET First Look
Sony Alpha DSLR-A900Sony's 24-megapixel digital SLR is finally official. We've tested it in the lab and shot with it in the field; here's our preliminary verdict.
[ Music ] ^M00:00:04 >> Lori Grunin: Hi! I'm Lori Grunin, Senior Editor with CNET. And this is the Sony Alpha DSLR A-900. This is Sony's first full-frame digital SLR and it's based around Sony's new 24-megapixel CMOS chip. On one hand, it has a lot of the things that I really like in the Sony digital SLRs as I've seen in the A-700. The quick navigation which is a way of navigating around all your settings, I really like that. I think they have an excellent grip and you need it for this camera because it's very heavy especially with this lens and I suspect with a lot of the other full-frame lenses that you're going to see out of Sony. There are certain things that are kind of disappointing about it. For one, the image quality is nice, but it didn't really blow me away. Unfortunately, the camera is slow and by slow I don't mean it can't handle five frames per second burst. By slow I mean the lens takes a relatively long time to focus and shoot. Plus, the shutter is very loud which adds to the sense of slowness when you hear it go kafunk [phonetic]. Also while Sony adds some interesting features to it such as the new intelligent preview, which you press the depth of field preview button and it shows you a non-saved version of your scene so that you can tweak light balance, etcetera, etcetera. Unfortunately the button that they assigned it to is in a very bad place. One thing Sony does know how to do though is make accessories. Like the A-700, the battery grip for the A-900 is very well-designed including all of the controls that you have while shooting horizontally in the vertical position. The other accessory I really like is Sony's new flash. They do something that you look at yourself and say why didn't somebody do this year ago. They call it Quick Bounce and it enables you to maintain the same flash direction when your shooting vertically as you are horizontally. Plus I discovered there's a lot of creative uses for it when you actually, you know, don't wanna maintain your flash consistency. I'm Lori Grunin and this Sony Alpha DSLR A-900. [ Music ] ^M00:02:16