• 35mm 861.6mm2
  • 24.6 megapixels
  • ISO 200 - 3200
  • APS-C 369.0mm2
  • 14.8 megapixels
  • ISO 100 - 6400

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Differences

Sony A900 advantages over Sigma SD1 Merrill

  • Lens selection
    Good vs Limited
    Better lens selection gives you more options
  • Larger sensor
    35mm vs APS-C
    More sensor area. Bigger is (generally) better.
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
    Yes vs No
    Reduces the effects of camera shake at slower shutter speeds
  • Bigger pixels
    ~ 5.94 vs 5.00 microns
    Better low-light and dynamic range (all else equal)
  • Fast startup
    ~0.50 vs 4.5 sec
    Faster startup lets you catch the moment
  • Top deck display
    Yes vs No
    Check settings with a screen on top of the camera
  • HDMI out
    HDMI out vs None
    Use HDMI output to monitor or review video
  • More dots on screen
    922k vs 460k dots
    Can mean greater resolution or a brighter screen
  • Less shutter lag
    0.18 vs 0.38 sec
    Focus and take a photo quickly (wide angle)
  • More viewfinder magnification
    0.74x vs 0.63x
    Get a bigger view of the scene through the eye-level viewfinder
  • More pixels
    24.6 vs 14.8 megapixels
    Higher resolution photos
  • Dual card slots
    Yes vs No
    Gives you more storage flexibility
  • Faster JPEG shooting
    5.0 fps vs 4.1 fps
    Faster JPEG shooting (burst mode)
  • Bigger JPEG buffer
    11 vs 7 shots
    Take more JPEG shots before waiting (burst mode)

Sigma SD1 Merrill advantages over Sony A900

  • Less expensive
    $2299 vs $3000 (MSRP)
    Save money for lenses or accessories
  • Internal flash
    Internal flash vs None
    Useful in a pinch for fill flash
  • Doesn't require an AA filter
    Yes vs No
    A unique sensor design provides sharp photos without moiré

Similarities

Common Strengths

  • Eye-level viewfinder
    Both provide
    You'll be able to frame photos even when the sun is out
  • Pentaprism viewfinder
    Both provide
    Much better viewfinder picture fidelity
  • 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
  • Tilt-swivel screen
    Neither provide
    Tilt and swivel the screen for maximum shooting flexibility
  • Touchscreen
    Neither provide
    Interact with your camera just like your smartphone
  • In-camera panoramas
    Neither provide
    Stitches multiple shots into a panoramic photo
  • Tiltable Screen
    Neither provide
    Tilt the screen for shooting flexbility
  • 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

User reviews

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Review Excerpt

The Competition

Compared to Nikon D300S

Sony A900
Nikon D300S
  • $3000
  • 35mm
  • Larger sensor
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
  • $1733
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Fast startup
Sigma SD1 Merrill
Nikon D300S
  • $1799
  • APS-C
  • More pixels
  • Doesn't require an AA filter
  • $1733
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Fast startup

Compared to Sony A850

Sony A900
Sony A850
  • $3000
  • 35mm
  • Faster JPEG shooting
  • $2219
  • 35mm
  • Less expensive
  • Bigger JPEG buffer
Sigma SD1 Merrill
Sony A850
  • $1799
  • APS-C
  • Internal flash
  • Doesn't require an AA filter
  • $2219
  • 35mm
  • Lens selection
  • Larger sensor

Compared to Sony DSLR-A550

Sony A900
Sony DSLR-A550
  • $3000
  • 35mm
  • Larger sensor
  • Bigger pixels
  • $859
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Tiltable Screen
Sigma SD1 Merrill
Sony DSLR-A550
  • $1799
  • APS-C
  • Pentaprism viewfinder
  • More viewfinder magnification
  • $859
  • APS-C
  • Lens selection
  • Less expensive

Compared to Nikon D800

Sony A900
Nikon D800
  • $3000
  • 35mm
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
  • Bigger pixels
  • $1850
  • 35mm
  • Lens selection
  • Fast startup
Sigma SD1 Merrill
Nikon D800
  • $1799
  • APS-C
  • Less expensive
  • Doesn't require an AA filter
  • $1850
  • 35mm
  • Lens selection
  • Larger sensor

Compared to Canon 5D Mark III

Sony A900
Canon 5D Mark III
  • $3000
  • 35mm
  • In-Camera Image Stabilization
  • $2899
  • 35mm
  • Lens selection
  • Higher effective ISO
Sigma SD1 Merrill
Canon 5D Mark III
  • $1799
  • APS-C
  • Internal flash
  • Doesn't require an AA filter
  • $2899
  • 35mm
  • Lens selection
  • Larger sensor
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