• 35mm 861.6mm2
  • 24.6 megapixels
  • ISO 200 - 3200
  • APS-C 366.6mm2
  • 16.1 megapixels
  •  

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Differences

Sony A850 advantages over Sony NEX-F3

  • Larger sensor
    35mm vs APS-C
    More sensor area. Bigger is (generally) better.
  • Eye-level viewfinder
    Eye-level vs Rear display only
    You'll be able to frame photos even when the sun is out
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
    Yes vs No
    Reduces the effects of camera shake at slower shutter speeds
  • Bigger pixels
    ~ 5.94 vs 4.78 microns
    Better low-light and dynamic range (all else equal)
  • Fast startup
    ~0.50 vs 1.5 sec
    Faster startup lets you catch the moment
  • Higher effective ISO
    1,415 vs 1,114 iso
    Take photos in low light with less noise
  • Longer stills battery life
    More info 880 vs 470 shots
    Capture more photos
  • Top deck display
    Yes vs No
    Check settings with a screen on top of the camera
  • Higher max flash sync
    1/250 vs 1/160 sec
    Reduce the effect of ambient light in flash shots
  • Less shutter lag
    0.18 vs 0.31 sec
    Focus and take a photo quickly (wide angle)
  • More pixels
    24.6 vs 16.1 megapixels
    Higher resolution photos
  • Dual card slots
    Yes vs No
    Gives you more storage flexibility
  • Bigger JPEG buffer
    23 vs 12 shots
    Take more JPEG shots before waiting (burst mode)
  • Faster shutter
    1/8000 vs 1/4000 sec
    Shoot wide open in bright light

Sony NEX-F3 advantages over Sony A850

  • Less expensive
    $600 vs $2000 (MSRP)
    Save money for lenses or accessories
  • In-camera panoramas
    Yes vs No
    Stitches multiple shots into a panoramic photo
  • Tiltable Screen
    Tiltable vs Fixed
    Tilt the screen for shooting flexbility
  • Internal flash
    Internal flash vs None
    Useful in a pinch for fill flash
  • Thinner
    41 mm vs 81 mm
    Thinner
  • Shoots 24p video
    Yes vs No
    Gives your movies a big-screen feel
  • Shoots 1080p video
    Yes vs No
    You'll want this if you shoot video
  • Faster JPEG shooting
    5.5 fps vs 3.0 fps
    Faster JPEG shooting (burst mode)
  • Higher extended ISO
    16000 vs 6400 ISO
    Higher extended ISO can give more low-light flexibility

Similarities

Common Strengths

  • 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

  • Focus peaking
    Neither provide
    Your camera will highlight what's in focus
  • Touchscreen
    Neither provide
    Interact with your camera just like your smartphone
  • Built-in Wi-Fi
    Neither provide
    Share your photos wirelessly
  • 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
  • External Mic Jack
    Neither provide
    Improved sound fidelity when shooting video
  • Headphone jack
    Neither provide
    Monitor audio recording while you shoot video
  • Slow-motion videos
    Neither provide
    Shoot slow-motion videos

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Review Excerpt

  • Great image quality; Above-average battery life for a mirrorless camera; Makes light work of shooting self-portraits; Very versatile video mode for a camera of this class.

  • Built-in flash is weak and uneven; Grip feels cramped due to low shutter button position; Bundled kit lens turns in a mediocre performance, and body isn't sold without the lens.

The Competition

Compared to Sony A900

Sony A850
Sony A900
  • $2219
  • 35mm
  • Less expensive
  • Bigger JPEG buffer
  • $3000
  • 35mm
  • Faster JPEG shooting
Sony NEX-F3
Sony A900
  • $600
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • In-camera panoramas
  • $3000
  • 35mm
  • Larger sensor
  • Eye-level viewfinder

Compared to Canon 5D Mark III

Sony A850
Canon 5D Mark III
  • $2219
  • 35mm
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
  • $2692
  • 35mm
  • Lens selection
  • Higher effective ISO
Sony NEX-F3
Canon 5D Mark III
  • $600
  • APS-C
  • In-camera panoramas
  • Tiltable Screen
  • $2692
  • 35mm
  • Lens selection
  • Larger sensor

Compared to Sony NEX-5R

Sony A850
Sony NEX-5R
  • $2219
  • 35mm
  • Larger sensor
  • Eye-level viewfinder
  • $348
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • Touchscreen
Sony NEX-F3
Sony NEX-5R
  • $600
  • APS-C
  • Higher effective ISO
  • Longer stills battery life
  • $348
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • Touchscreen

Compared to Sony NEX-6

Sony A850
Sony NEX-6
  • $2219
  • 35mm
  • Larger sensor
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
  • $498
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • In-camera panoramas
Sony NEX-F3
Sony NEX-6
  • $600
  • APS-C
  • Fast startup
  • Longer stills battery life
  • $498
  • APS-C
  • Focus peaking
  • Eye-level viewfinder

Compared to Sony A99

Sony A850
Sony A99
  • $2219
  • 35mm
  • Fast startup
  • Longer stills battery life
  • $1998
  • 35mm
  • Tilt-swivel screen
  • Focus peaking
Sony NEX-F3
Sony A99
  • $600
  • APS-C
  • Internal flash
  • Thinner
  • $1998
  • 35mm
  • Tilt-swivel screen
  • Focus peaking
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