Sony Alpha A99: Conclusion

December 21, 2012 by Chris Gampat Reads (28,151)
Editor's Rating

Ratings Breakdown (1-10)

    • Image/Video Quality
    • 9
    • Features
    • 9
    • Design / Ease of Use
    • 8
    • Performance
    • 9
    • Expandability
    • 9
    • Total Score:
    • 8.80
    • Rating 1 to 10, top score 10

By all means, this is a camera that can hold its own with the 5D Mk III and D800. Though its standard autofocus may not be as good as its competitors, where it excels is in tracking focusing. Many photographers still like using the center focusing point and recomposing; and this camera seems to have been designed to do that partially with AF-D. 

Beyond the autofocusing, the image quality is really very spectacular with skin tones being some of the best we’ve seen and white balancing also being very true to life. Part of this has to come from its excellent metering performance; which we rated as perfect when doing an old school Sunny 16 test and when using a handheld light meter.

High ISO results are a mixed bag with there being some loss of detail between 3200 and 6400 while beyond 6400 contained lots of detail but showed unacceptable levels of color noise.

Ergonomically speaking, this is one of the most comfortable DSLRs we’ve handled for a long period of time. The light weight will mean less trips to the massage therapist after shooting many weddings over and over in a row.

The camera has a lot going for it, but it can come at a cost. For example, the battery life only really lasted us around six hours when out shooting around NYC. Additionally, when shooting video one must switch the camera’s AF to manual in order to have manual control over the exposure settings. Plus, the camera can be slow to start up and navigating the menus can be a bit intimidating.

Overall, the A99 is still a very solid choice if you’re willing to give it a chance. We highly suggest renting it first though.

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