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Tracking the Trends at PMA

(March 2008) posted on Tue Mar 11, 2008

A handful of new DSLRs took center stage at this year's show.

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By Clare Baker

The DSLRs feature Sony Bionz Image Processor, designed to enhance images with rich tonal reproduction, improve white balance and exposure control, and expand D-Range optimize capabilities, reports Sony. The A350 and A300 also incorporates Super SteadyShot image stabilization which reduces shutter lag by 2.5 to 3.5 step, allowing the user to shoot with minimum blur or adjust exposure control for smaller lens aperture. Both also feature an ISO range from 100 to 3200 and High ISO Noise Reduction technology that reduces noise at ISO 1600 and 3200 by eliminating noise from raw data. Additionally, the cameras utilize Sony's Dynamic Range Optimizer which applies image adjustment curves to expand the tonal range.

The cameras also feature an improved user interface, an automatic pop-up flash, an anti-dust system, and support for JPEG and RAW file format. Both accept CompactFlash Type I/II media; an adaptor for Memory Stick Duo media cards is also available.

Price: A300 with a DT 18-70mm f3.5-5.6 zoom lens, $800. A350 camera body, $800; A350 with a DT 18-70mm f3.5-5.6 3.9x zoom lens, $900. The A300 and A350 are expected to ship in April and March, respectively.

Additionally, Sony announced two new zoom lens for use with its line of Alpha DSLRs. The Vario Sonnar T* 24-70mm f/2.8 ZA is a wide angle 24-70mm zoom lens with a f/2.8 aperture designed for landscape and portrait photography. It features Carl Zeiss T* coating technology to provide higher light transmission and minimize glare. The 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 G lens is a telephoto zoom lens designed for medium and long distance shots, including sports and portrait photography. The lens utilizes extra-low dispersion glass to reduce chromatic aberration. Both utilize Sony's Super Sonic wave Motor (SSM) technology for fast and silent auto-focusing. Prices: Vario Sonnar T* 24-70mm f/2.8 ZA, $1750; 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 G, $800.