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Sony A850 compared to other "compact" full-frame DSLRs

Sony A850 compared to other "compact" full-frame DSLRs

The chart below compares the Sony Alpha A850 with the A900, the Canon 5D Mark II and the Nikon D700. What we've done below is presented something of a hybrid comparison between these three models. A red cell means that a given camera performs below the others, a green cell means that it performs better than the others, and a yellow cell means it falls between. In cases where two cameras share a superior capability, both cells will be colored green, etc.

 

Sony A850 vs other "compact" Full Frame DSLRs
Manufacturer
Canon
Nikon
Sony Sony
Model
EOS 5D Mark II
D700
DSLR-A850 DSLR-A900
Imaging
System
Sensor Manufacturer
Canon
Sony
Sony
Sony
Sensor Type
CMOS
CMOS
CMOS
CMOS
Color Filter Array
RGB
RGB
RGB
RGB
Total Megapixels
22.0
12.87
25.7
25.7
Effective Megapixels
21.1
12.1
24.6
24.6
Effective Sensor Size (mm)
36.0 x 24.0
36.0 x 23.9
35.9 x 24.0
35.9 x 24.0
Pixel Pitch (µm)
6.4
8.5
5.9
5.9
Focal Length Multiplier (approx.)
1.0x
1.0x
1.0x
1.0x
Image Processor
DIGIC IV
EXPEED
Dual BOINZ
Dual BOINZ
Viewfinder
Type
Eye-level pentaprism
Eye-level pentaprism
Eye-level pentaprism
Eye-level pentaprism
Coverage
98%
95%
98%
100%
Magnification (-1 diopter with 50mm lens at infinity)
0.71x
0.72x
0.74x
0.74x
Eyepoint (mm)
21
18
20
20
Dioptric Adjustment Range (diopters)
-3.0 to +1.0
-3.0 to +1.0
-3.0 to +1.0
-3.0 to +1.0
Focusing Screen
Interchangeable,
Eg-A standard focusing screen provided, Eg-D: Grid lines, Eg-S (point of Focus) available
Fixed
Type B BriteView Clear Matte VI, with on-demand grid lines
Interchangeable,
Spherical Acute Matte focusing screen (type G) provided, Type L (grid) and Type M (super-spherical acute matte) available
Interchangeable,
Spherical Acute Matte focusing screen (type G) provided, Type L (grid) and Type M (super-spherical acute matte) available
Built-in Eyepiece Shutter
No Yes Yes Yes
Viewfinder
Info Display
AF (AF points, focus confirmation light), Exposure (shutter speed, aperture, ISO speed, AE lock, exposure level, spot metering circle), Flash information (flash ready, flash exposure compensation, High-speed sync, FE lock), Image information (Highlight tone priority, monochrome shooting, maximum burst, white balance correction, CF card information), battery information
AF (AF points, focus confirmation, focus range-finder), on-demand framing grid, Exposure (exposure mode, shutter speed, shutter speed lock, aperture, aperture lock, aperture stop, ISO speed, Auto ISO, AE lock, exposure level, center-weighted metering circle, metering mode), Flash information (flash ready, flash exposure compensation, flash sync, FV lock), Image information (maximum burst, space on card, white balance recording), battery status, tilt indicator
AF (AF points, focus confirmation, manual focus), 16:9 area, APS-C crop area, Exposure (shutter speed, aperture, aperture, EV scale, AE lock, exposure level, spot metering circle), Flash information (flash ready, flash exposure compensation, wireless flash, high-speed sync), Image information (maximum burst, shake warning, SteadyShot level, aspect ratio
AF (AF points, focus confirmation, manual focus), 16:9 area, APS-C crop area, Exposure (shutter speed, aperture, aperture, EV scale, AE lock, exposure level, spot metering circle), Flash information (flash ready, flash exposure compensation, wireless flash, high-speed sync), Image information (maximum burst, shake warning, SteadyShot level, aspect ratio
Depth of Field Preview
Enabled with depth-of-field preview button
Enabled with depth-of-field preview button
Enabled with depth-of-field preview button
Enabled with depth-of-field preview button
Recording
System
Recording Media / Slot Type
CF Card Type I and II, UDMA-compliant CF cards supported; (USB v.2.0 hard drive, via optional Wireless File Transmitter WFT-E4A)
Type I CF card
UDMA-compliant supported
Wireless Transmitter WT-4A supported
Dual CF Card (Type I and II, UDMA-compliant CF cards supported )
Memory Stick Duo slots
Dual CF Card (Type I and II, UDMA-compliant CF cards supported )
Memory Stick Duo slots
Compatible File System
FAT 16 / FAT 32
FAT 16 / FAT 32
FAT 16 / FAT 32
FAT 16 / FAT 32
Recording Formats
RAW, sRAW1, sRAW2 (CR2), JPEG, MOV
RAW 12-bit or 14-bit (uncompressed, lossless compressed or compressed NEF), TIFF (32-bit), JPEG
RAW, cRAW (ARW), JPEG
RAW, cRAW (ARW), JPEG
A/D conversion
14-bit
14-bit
12-bit
12-bit
Dynamic Range Optimization Modes
Yes
(Highlight Tone Priority,
on/off)
Yes
(Advanced D-Lighting,
4 settings plus off)
Yes
(D-Range Optimization,
7 settings plus off)
Yes
(D-Range Optimization,
7 settings plus off)
Maximum Resolution
5,616 x 3,744

FX format (36 x 24):
4,256 x 2,832

DX format (24 x 16):
2,784 x 1,848

6,048 x 4,032
6,048 x 4,032
Reduced Resolutions (JPEG only)
4,080 x 2,720
2,784 x 1,856

FX format (36 x 24):
3,184 x 2,120
2,128 x 1,416

DX format (24 x 16):
2,080 x 1,384
1,392 x 920

4,400 x 2,936
3,024 x 2,016

16:9:
6,048 x 3,408
4,400 x 2,472
3,024 x 1,704

APS-C:
3,924 x 2,656
2,896 x 1,928
1,984 x 1,320

4,400 x 2,936
3,024 x 2,016

16:9:
6,048 x 3,408
4,400 x 2,472
3,024 x 1,704

APS-C:
3,924 x 2,656
2,896 x 1,928
1,984 x 1,320

RAW + JPEG Recording
Yes, selectable JPEG resolution / compression
Yes, selectable JPEG resolution / compression
Yes, selectable JPEG resolution / compression
Yes, selectable JPEG resolution / compression
Processing Parameters,
Color Space
&
White Balance
User-Selectable Color Space
Yes
sRGB + Adobe RGB
Yes
sRGB + Adobe RGB
Yes
sRGB + Adobe RGB
Yes
sRGB + Adobe RGB
WB settings
Auto, Daylight, Shade, Cloudy, Tungsten Light, White Fluorescent Light, Flash, Custom, Color Temperature setting
Auto, Direct Sunlight, Cloudy, Shade, Fluorescent, Incandescent, Flash, Custom, Color Temperature setting
Auto, Daylight, Shade, Cloudy, Tungsten, Fluorescent, Flash, 3 Custom, Color Temperature setting
Auto, Daylight, Shade, Cloudy, Tungsten, Fluorescent, Flash, 3 Custom, Color Temperature setting
Manual Color Temperature Setting Range
2,500 ~ 10,000K
2,500 ~ 10,000K
2,500 ~ 9,900K
2,500 ~ 9,900K
WB Adjustment Range
Blue/Amber and/or Magenta/Green bias
±9 steps
Blue/Amber and/or Magenta/Green bias
±6 steps
5 mireds per step
Blue/Amber and/or Magenta/Green bias
±9 steps
Blue/Amber and/or Magenta/Green bias
±9 steps
Vignette Correction
Yes
Yes
No No
Adjustable High ISO NR (levels)
Yes
(3, plus off)
Yes
(4, plus off)
Yes
(4, plus off)
Yes
(4, plus off)
Phase
Detection
Autofocus
System
Type
TTL-CT-SIR AF-dedicated CMOS sensor
TTL phase detection by Nikon Multi-CAM3500FX autofocus module
TTL phase detection by CCD line sensors
TTL phase detection by CCD line sensors
# of Focusing Points (Focusing Point Type)
9-point (1 center high-precision cross-type, 8 line-type, plus 6 line-type assist AF points), light source detection
51-point (15 cross-type, 36 line-type)
9-point (1 center dual cross-type, 8 line-type, plus 10 line-type assist AF points)
9-point (1 center dual cross-type, 8 line-type, plus 10 line-type assist AF points)
Superimposed Focus Point Display
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
AF Working Range
EV -0.5 ~ 18
EV -1 ~ 19
EV 0 ~ 18
EV 0 ~ 18
AF-assist Beam
None. Emitted by EX-series Speedlite or optional ST-E2 Speedlite Transmitter
Yes
Bright incandescent lamp
Yes
Bright LED
Yes
Bright LED
AF Servo Modes
Auto, One-Shot AF, Predictive AI Servo AF, AI Focus AF, Manual Focus (MF)
Single (S), Continuous (C), Manual Focus (M)
Single (AF-S), Auto (AF-A), Continuous (AF-C), Direct Manual Focus (DMF), Manual Focus (MF)
Single (AF-S), Auto (AF-A), Continuous (AF-C), Direct Manual Focus (DMF), Manual Focus (MF)
AF Area Modes
Single point, Auto area
Single point, Auto area, Dynamic area (9-points, 21-points, 51-points, or 51-points with 3D-tracking)
Wide, Spot, Local (9 local focus areas selectable)
Wide, Spot, Local (9 local focus areas selectable)
Focus Tracking
Focus tracking automatically activated by subject status in AI Focus or AI Servo mode
Focus tracking automatically activated by subject status
Focus tracking automatically activated by subject status
Focus tracking automatically activated by subject status
Exposure
Control
Shooting Modes
Auto, Creative Auto, Program AE (shiftable), Shutter-priority AE, Aperture-priority AE, Manual, Bulb, 3 Custom settings
Program AE (shiftable), Shutter-priority AE, Aperture-priority AE, Manual mode
Auto, Program AE (shiftable), Shutter-priority AE, Aperture-priority AE, Manual mode, 3 Custom settings
Auto, Program AE (shiftable), Shutter-priority AE, Aperture-priority AE, Manual mode, 3 Custom settings
Metering Zones
35
1,005
40
40
Metering Modes
Evaluative metering (linked to all AF points), Partial metering (approx. 8%; center), Spot metering (approx. 3.5%; center), Center-weighted average
3D Color Matrix Metering II, Center-weighted: Weight of 75% given to 8, 12, 15, or 20mm dia. circle in center of frame, Spot: Meters 3mm dia. circle (about 1.5% of frame) centered on active focus area
Multi-segment, Center-weighted average, Spot
Multi-segment, Center-weighted average, Spot
Metering System Working Range (with 50mm f/1.4 lens, ISO 100)
EV 1 ~ 20
EV 0 ~ 20
EV 2 ~ 20 (Spot metering)
EV 0 ~ 20
EV 2 ~ 20 (Spot metering)
EV 0 ~ 20
EV 2 ~ 20 (Spot metering)
ISO Range / Extended
100 ~ 6400 / 50, 25600
200 ~ 6400 / 100, 25600
200 ~ 3200 / 100, 6400
200 ~ 3200 / 100, 6400
Exposure Compensation
+/-2 EV in 1/2 or 1/3 EV increments
+/- 5EV in 1/2 or 1/3 EV increments
+/-3 EV in 1/2 or 1/3 EV increments
+/-3 EV in 1/2 or 1/3 EV increments
Automatic Exposure Bracketing
3 exposures, +/-2 EV in 1/2 or 1/3 EV steps
2 to 9 exposures, +/- 5 EV in increments of 1/3, 1/2, 2/3 or 1 EV
3 or 5 exposures, +/- 3 EV in increments of 1/3, 1/2, 2/3, 1 or 2 EV
3 or 5 exposures, +/- 3 EV in increments of 1/3, 1/2, 2/3, 1 or 2 EV
Shutter Speeds,
Frame Rate, Shutter Lag
Shutter Type
Electronically-controlled focal-plane shutter; rated for 150K actuations
Electronically-controlled focal-plane shutter; rated for 150K actuations
Electronically-controlled focal-plane shutter; rated for 150K actuations
Electronically-controlled focal-plane shutter; rated for 150K actuations
Shutter Speed Range
1/8000 ~ 30 sec. (1/2 or 1/3EV increments) and bulb
1/8000 ~ 30 sec. (1/2 or 1/3EV increments) and bulb
1/8000 ~ 30 sec. (1/2 or 1/3EV increments) and bulb
1/8000 ~ 30 sec. (1/2 or 1/3EV increments) and bulb
Maximum Frames Per Second / Buffer depth
3.9 fps / 75 large/fine JPEG or 11 RAW frames
5 fps / 20+ JPEG or 18 12-bit RAW or 17 14-bit RAW frames
up to 8 fps with optional MB-D10 battery pack
3 fps / 23 large/extra fine JPEG or 16 RAW frames
5 fps / 11 large/extra fine JPEG or 13 RAW frames
Shutter lag, full AF (sec.)
0.206
0.197
0.184
0.183
Shutter lag, prefocus (sec.)
0.082
0.045
0.074
0.072
Flash
Built-in Flash / Guide Number at ISO 100.
No
Yes, (GN 12)
can act as Wireless Commander
No
No
Max flash x-sync speed. (sec.)
1/200
1/250
1/250
(1/200 with SteadyShot active)
1/250
(1/200 with SteadyShot active)
PC Sync Terminal
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Playback
System
LCD Size / Pixel Count
3.0 in. LCD /
921,600 pixels
3.0 in. LCD /
921,600 pixels
3.0 in. LCD /
921,600 pixels
3.0 in. LCD /
921,600 pixels
Enlarged Playback / Scroll
Up to TBDx / Yes
Up to 27x / Yes
Up to 19x / Yes
Up to 19x / Yes
LCD Monitor Brightness Adjustment Range
7 steps
7 steps
7 steps
7 steps
Automatic Rotation for Vertical Shots
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Extensive In-camera Image Editing
No
Yes,
D-Lighting, Red-eye Correction,Trim, Monochrome, Filter Effects, Color Balance, Image Overaly
No
No
Other Features
Live View mode
Yes
Phase- and Contrast-detect modes,
Face detection, Exposure simulation
Yes
Phase- and Contrast-detect modes
No
(but has "Intelligent Preview")
No
(but has "Intelligent Preview")
Computer Connection
USB 2.0 High-Speed, PTP-compliant
USB 2.0 High-Speed, PTP-compliant
USB 2.0 High-Speed, PTP-compliant
USB 2.0 High-Speed, PTP-compliant
Direct Printing (PictBridge compliant printers)
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Menu Languages (US model)
25 (English, German, French, Dutch, Danish, Portuguese, Finnish, Italian, Norwegian, Swedish, Spanish, Greek, Russian, Polish, Czech, Hungarian, Romanian, Ukraine, Turkish, Arabic, Thai, Simplified/Traditional Chinese, Korean, Japanese)
15 (Chinese [Simplified and Traditional], Dutch, English, Finnish, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Swedish)
6 (English, French, Spanish, Italian, Japanese, Chinese)
6 (English, French, Spanish, Italian, Japanese, Chinese)
Camera Default Reset
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Custom Functions (Quantity)
Yes (25)
Yes (50)
Yes (16)
Yes (16)
Remote Control
Yes, wired and wireless
Yes, 10-pin terminal
Yes, wired and wireless
Yes, wired and wireless
(wireless included)
Info LCD Panel / Illumination
Yes / Yes (dedicated button)
Yes / Yes (power switch)
Yes / Yes (dedicated button)
Yes / Yes (dedicated button)
Ultrasonic sensor dust-removal function
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Eye-start AF
No
No
No
No
Anti-Shake
(Sensor shift)
No
No
Yes
Yes
Movie Mode?
Yes,
HD (1920 x 1080 pixels, 30fps)
or SD (640 x 480 pixels, 30fps),
up to 4GB per clip
No
No
No
HDMI output
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
AF micro- adjustment
Yes,
20 lenses, body
Yes,
12 lenses
Yes,
30 lenses
Yes,
30 lenses
Virtual Horizon
No Yes No No
C.A. Reduction
No Yes No No
Body
Construction
Magnesium Alloy
Magnesium Alloy
Magnesium Alloy
Magnesium Alloy
Dust and weather resistant
Yes
Yes
Yes
Yes
Power System
Battery Compatibility
LP-E6,
optional battery grip
EN-EL3e,
optional battery grip
NP-FM500H,
optional battery grip
NP-FM500H,
optional battery grip
CIPA Rated Shooting Capacity at 23°C/73°F
850
(no flash)
1000
(50% flash)
880
(no flash)
880
(no flash)
Dimensions & Weight
Dimensions (WxHxD, mm)
152 x 114 x 75
147 x 123 x 77
156 x 117 x 82
156 x 117 x 82
Weight (body only)
810g / 28.6 oz.
995g / 35.1 oz.
850g / 30 oz.
850g / 30 oz.
Operational
Environment
Operating Temperature Range
0 ~ 40°C / 32 ~ 104°F
0 ~ 40°C / 32 ~ 104°F
0 ~ 40°C / 32 ~ 104°F
0 ~ 40°C / 32 ~ 104°F
Operating Humidity Range
< 85%
< 85%
< 85%
< 85%
Lens Compatibility
Lens Mount / Compatibility
Canon EF, TS-E, and MP-E lenses (EF-S lenses not supported)
Nikon F-Mount
(FX, DX, AF, AF-S, AI lenses supported)
Sony Alpha / Konica Minolta Maxxum AF
Sony Alpha / Konica Minolta Maxxum AF
APS-C Crop Mode?
No,
APS-C lenses not supported
Yes Yes,
(metering may not be accurate)
Yes,
(metering may not be accurate)
M.S.R.P.
Body only
US$2,700
US$3,000
US$2,000
US$2,700