Proving just how quickly plans can progress in the photo business, the company has now reversed that decision, and announced its intention to ship the Sony Alpha A580 in the USA from November 2010. The Alpha A560, meanwhile, has been delayed until the first quarter of 2011, with the company citing unanticipated levels of demand for its NEX-series single-lens direct view cameras.
The only significant difference between the Sony A580 and the other cameras is to be found in their choice of imaging sensor, with the A580 adopting a 16.2 megapixel, APS-C sized CMOS sensor, while the NEX-series cameras and the now-postponed A560 all feature 14.2 megapixel, APS-C CMOS chips. From this, we'd infer that the NEX-series cameras are taking up all of Sony's 14.2 megapixel sensor production capacity, leaving the A560 with a component shortage. Since the A580 uses a different chip, it faces no such problems.
Pricing for the Sony A580 in the US market has been set at around $800 body-only, and $900 with an 18-55mm kit lens, around $150 more than the previously announced pricing for the Sony A560. More details on the A580 can be found in our Sony A580 preview.
While the announcement means that prospective A560 customers will either have a longer than anticipated wait on their hands, or will need to switch to the more expensive, but higher resolution A580 model, it has to be seen as great news for Sony's nascent NEX-series. Healthy sales of the NEX-3 and NEX-5 would suggest that Sony's designs have struck a chord with photographers' needs.
Sony's Alpha DSLR-A580 digital SLR will be available in the US this November.
Photo provided by Sony Electronics Inc.