• APS-C 369.7mm2
  • 16.1 megapixels
  • ISO 100 - 16,000
  • APS-C 366.6mm2
  • 24.4 megapixels
  • ISO 100 - 51,200

Buy From

Differences

Sony A57 advantages over Pentax K-3

  • Bigger pixels
    ~ 4.82 vs 3.91 microns
    Better low-light and dynamic range (all else equal)
  • In-camera panoramas
    Yes vs No
    Stitches multiple shots into a panoramic photo
  • Tiltable Screen
    Tiltable vs Fixed
    Tilt the screen for shooting flexbility
  • Lighter weight
    828g vs 1240g
    Lighter weight
  • More viewfinder magnification
    0.69x vs 0.63x
    Get a bigger view of the scene through the eye-level viewfinder
  • Faster JPEG shooting
    10.0 fps vs 7.1 fps
    Faster JPEG shooting (burst mode)

Pentax K-3 advantages over Sony A57

  • Lens selection
    Excellent vs Good
    Better lens selection gives you more options
  • Higher effective ISO
    1,216 vs 785 iso
    Take photos in low light with less noise
  • More telephoto lens reach
    203 mm vs 83 mm
    Capture objects farther away with the kit lens
  • Top deck display
    Yes vs No
    Check settings with a screen on top of the camera
  • External Mic Jack
    Jack vs No jack
    Improved sound fidelity when shooting video
  • More cross-type AF points
    25 vs 3
    Cross-type AF points improve autofocus performance
  • More pixels
    24.4 vs 16.1 megapixels
    Higher resolution photos
  • Dual card slots
    Yes vs No
    Gives you more storage flexibility
  • More AF points
    27 vs 15
    More AF points improve autofocus
  • Headphone jack
    Yes vs No
    Monitor audio recording while you shoot video
  • Optional anti-aliasing filter
    Optional vs Fixed
    Lets you choose sharper photos or reduced moiré
  • Bigger JPEG buffer
    75 vs 25 shots
    Take more JPEG shots before waiting (burst mode)
  • Faster shutter
    1/8000 vs 1/4000 sec
    Shoot wide open in bright light
  • Higher extended ISO
    51200 vs 25600 ISO
    Higher extended ISO can give more low-light flexibility

Similarities

Common Strengths

  • Focus peaking
    Both provide
    Your camera will highlight what's in focus
  • Eye-level viewfinder
    Both provide
    You'll be able to frame photos even when the sun is out
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
    Both provide
    Reduces the effects of camera shake at slower shutter speeds
  • Internal flash
    Both provide
    Useful in a pinch for fill flash
  • HDMI out
    Both provide
    Use HDMI output to monitor or review video
  • Hot shoe
    Both provide
    Off-camera flashes open new possibilities
  • Bulb shutter
    Both provide
    Hold the shutter open manually for long exposures

Common Weaknesses

  • Touchscreen
    Neither provide
    Interact with your camera just like your smartphone
  • Built-in Wi-Fi
    Neither provide
    Share your photos wirelessly
  • NFC
    Neither provide
    Simplifies pairing your camera with supported phones
  • Built-in Bluetooth
    Neither provide
    Always-on wireless connectivity
  • Built-in GPS
    Neither provide
    Geotag your photos
  • On-sensor phase detect
    Neither provide
    Usually improves live view and video AF performance
  • Slow-motion videos
    Neither provide
    Shoot slow-motion videos

User reviews

Buy From

Review Excerpt

  • Top-notch image quality; Great ergonomics in a compact body; Unique on-demand low-pass filtering; Broad sensitivity range; Large and bright viewfinder for an APS-C camera; Dual card slots; Optional Wi-Fi remote control

  • AE Lock button is poorly located; Below-average battery life for a DSLR; Rather dated-looking menu system; Requires a different battery grip accessory than its predecessors; Less third-party support than some rivals

The Competition

Compared to Nikon D5100

Sony A57
Nikon D5100
  • $800
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
  • $549
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Tilt-swivel screen
Pentax K-3
Nikon D5100
  • $699
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
  • $549
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Tilt-swivel screen

Compared to Sony A37

Sony A57
Sony A37
  • $800
  • APS-C
  • Longer stills battery life
  • Higher-res screen
  • $600
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • External Mic Jack
Pentax K-3
Sony A37
  • $699
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Higher effective ISO
  • $600
  • APS-C
  • Bigger pixels
  • In-camera panoramas

Compared to Pentax K-5 IIs

Sony A57
Pentax K-5 IIs
  • $800
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • In-camera panoramas
  • $623
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Higher effective ISO
Pentax K-3
Pentax K-5 IIs
  • $699
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • More cross-type AF points
  • $623
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Bigger pixels

Compared to Nikon D7100

Sony A57
Nikon D7100
  • $800
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
  • $795
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Higher effective ISO
Pentax K-3
Nikon D7100
  • $699
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
  • $795
  • APS-C
  • Fast startup
  • Longer stills battery life

Compared to Nikon D5300

Sony A57
Nikon D5300
  • $800
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
  • $573
  • APS-C
  • Tilt-swivel screen
  • Lens selection
Pentax K-3
Nikon D5300
  • $699
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
  • $573
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Tilt-swivel screen
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