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Sony A65 24.3 MP Digital SLR with Translucent Mirror Technology – Body Only

Sony A65 24.3 MP Digital SLR with Translucent Mirror Technology – Body Only
Sony A65 24.3 MP Digital SLR with Translucent Mirror Technology – Body Only

Product Added : February 12th, 2013
Category : Digital SLR Cameras

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Sony A65 24.3 MP Digital SLR with Translucent Mirror Technology – Body Only

Sony A65 24.3 MP Digital SLR with Translucent Mirror Technology - Body Only

Best of both worlds, 24.3 megapixel and up to 10 fps. Get action photos, HD Movies and Live View shots that other cameras miss, thanks to Sony’s exclusive Translucent Mirror Technology. Enjoy smooth and creative HD video at full 1920 x 1080 resolution – at either 60p or 24p frame rate – plus the world’s first OLED electronic viewfinder.2

  • 2nd Generation Translucent Mirror Technology camera
  • 24.3 MP for superb detail and amazing enlargements
  • Ultra-fast up to 10 fps continuous shooting with Auto Focus
  • World’s first OLED viewfinder; big and bright
  • World’s first HD Movie mode with AVCHD 60p/60i/24p

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What customers say about Sony A65 24.3 MP Digital SLR with Translucent Mirror Technology – Body Only?

  1. 159 of 162 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    Simply the best midrange DSLR (that isn’t even a DSLR), November 28, 2011
    D. F. Watt “dfwatt” (Natick, MA USA) –

    Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)

    This is a serially (and over time very extensively) revised review, as I have had a chance to spend lots of time with this camera over the last ten months and taken roughly 15000 pictures – for sure one of the best electronics purchases I have made in the last 10 years. Some of the initial problems I saw (flash overexposure for one) have been addressed in firmware updates (or require some user adjustments). JPEGs (Sony’s default jpeg algorithm could use some tweaking/sharpening) print out sharply at 30 by 20 print sizes (as long as I stay under ISO 800). RAW images at low ISO will print tack sharp to 36×24 easily. When paired with the new Sony 16-50mm 2.8 lens (see separate review for this terrific lens), takes some of the best pictures this side of a FF pro camera) – if you stay to ISO 800 and under. The one Achilles heel of this camera is low light noise, but with flash, I mostly avoid shooting at anything over ISO 1600, so this weakness is really rendered a moot point. For those shooting in the virtual dark, see body text for comments (and confessions).

    And for those curious about the cryptic header (that this isn’t a DSLR), it is a DSLT – meaning that a fixed translucent mirror that doesn’t move replaces the standard SLR mirror that has to flop in and out of position in front of the sensor. That design difference is the key to the camera’s unique strengths (and its weaknesses in the minds of many purists). However, that single design difference allows the much faster and more accurate phase detection autofocus system to be working all the time, including while shooting movies (something no other DSLR can do), and thus gives you full time live view, much faster hi-speed shooting, and a lighter body, but also requires an electronic (non-optical) viewfinder, and with a modest loss of light to the sensor (with some attendant noise penalty). The key issue is whether that balance of pluses and minuses works for you . . . . but for most people looking for the best possible still photography and video, this is, at least in IMHO, a truly brilliant stroke that in one fell swoop removes some of the chronic limitations of the classic DSLR environs. There are a few downsides, but with HUGE upsides. Whether its mix of features works for you might depend on what and where you shoot . . . .


    1) Best viewfinder in the sub-frame world (2.4 million dot OLED), as bright as any full frame viewfinder, and with far more useful information. Once you’ve used it, you may not be able to go back. Paradigm changing – once you see what you can do creatively with this new tool, optical viewfinders seem primitive and confining.
    2) Class leading 24 megapixel resolution (at low to medium ISO, yields remarkably detailed images, esp in RAW).
    3) Many useful shooting modes including panorama and high dynamic range modes (but see cons on panorama mode). Intuitive and yet deep & customizable operating system. But can be put in simple AUTO and AUTO+ modes for the less technical.
    4) Full-time live view system and full time phase detection AF for both stills and movies – FAR better than the clunky live view systems ‘tacked on’ in traditional DSLRs, and the contrast detection DLSRs have to use with mirror-lockup and movie shooting.
    5) Class-leading video resolution (1080 at 60p) with as good video capabilities as any camcorder. Takes as good or better video than any DSLR if shooting in 60p, and with option to use either viewfinder or LCD for framing video – something no other DSLR can do.
    6) Intuitive and well thought-out ergonomics.
    7) Fast and responsive operation. Fastest continuous shooting in class (10 frames per second). Fast focusing, decent menu speed (improved w/ new firmware)
    8) Excellent image stabilization system (and no more sensor overheating from the IS that plagued the Sony A55!).
    9) In-camera GPS (can be defeated).
    10) Decent battery life (significant battery upgrade from the Alpha 55) given that EVF sucks down a lot of battery.
    11) Best features/price ratio in the middle to high-end consumer/prosumer model DSLR group.
    12) Easy access to any Minolta lens and a decent selection of Sony lenses for reasonable money, particularly a superb new 16-50 mm 2.8 lens (see separate review).
    13) Ability to remove virtually all CA, distortion, and vignetting in increasing number of Sony lens (firmware-based). When used with the new 16-50mm 2.8 lens, produces very sharp images, w/out any visible classic optical distortions (CA, vignetting, barrel distortion, etc).

    Firmware correction of lens optical aberrations has to be one of most under-appreciated but valuable features of this new camera’s operating system. These corrections work with many popular Sony lenses (now available for virtually all the Sony kit and telephoto zooms and most Sony primes), w/ more included in future firmware (wish Sony would make that full…

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  2. 138 of 146 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    Phenomenal Game Changer, November 9, 2011
    Amazon Verified Purchase(What’s this?)

    I have only had this A65 for a couple of days so let’s call this a “first impression”. I think one of the early magazine reviews called the A65 and A77 “game changers”. I have to agree and think that the engineers at Canon and Nikon are really looking at this camera. I also have a Nikon 5100 and Canon G12 in which to compare. Neither of those cameras are slouches. The G12 is my “go to” and I love it dearly (buy one). Of course it is a high end P&S, but a P&S none the less. So I will base my comparison on the Nikon 5100.

    Most of my comparisons have been indoor flash shots and a night shots outside. Pixels comparisons aside (16m for the 5100 and 24 for the A65), I am astounded by how much better the Sony photos are. And I thought the 5100 was good-and it is, of course. One of reasons I bought the 5100 was to replace a Nikon D80. I love having a flip out screen, which it and the Sony have. I NEED flip out screens, the G12 has one too. I take a lot of my shots from a position other than up to my eye. Anyway, more about the A65.

    The OLED viewfinder is amazing. For a real thorough review of the viewfinder alone check out a review of the A77 here on Amazon. The A65 and A77 share the same viewfinder. First off, is shows the entire image which you don’t get with the 5100. You have to move up to, what the D7000 to get that? I have to tell you the ability to level the camera in the viewfinder in two axis is REALLY handy. No more wonky horizons. I hike a lot in our local PA mountains. The ability to sight across from one hill side to the other and use the viewfinder as a sighting level is a real cool, but admittedly esoteric use of the view finder. Once you have the viewfinder tilt and yaw indicator you will be spoiled forever trust me on that!

    With the push of a button you can zoom in the view finder very easily. You can turn on and off the information you see in the finder.

    Here’s another advantage in bright daylight: You can review the photos in the finder with your eye through the finder. That is another of MANY pluses of the EVF. I understand Sony has broken some new ground with this new EVF vs. the older iterations of EVFs. They are here to stay. My guess is the optical viewfinder will fade (no flames please). This a very big deal. Using it is a “wow” moment as it is a better mousetrap.

    If you put the 5100 on Live View and compare it to the Sony A65 there is NO comparison. If you take a photo in Live View you need to wait until the darn mirror flips up and down. Slooooooow. A P&S camera such as the G12 is MUCH faster shot to shot since it does not have to operate a mirror. The Sony just zooms along merrily, click, click, click, click. Then if you want to mimic a chain gun on a Apache helicopter put it on a continuous 10 shots a second mode. I had no way to measure it, but I put the 5100 on continuous shooting (of course, NOT with Live View) and it was quite a bit slower with that darn ‘ole mirror getting a workout. Don’t forget, though, to minimize your SD card choking on all that data you need to use one of “Extreme” SD cards. I assume you would want that type of SD card for videos anyway (I don’t do much video). A cheapy SD card will work fine unless you want to play machine gun with the shutter. No matter what, it will not keep up with 10fps for very long. I am not sure how the other DSLRs fair in that regard. I did use it an action pistol match my son and competed in. I was able to capture his flying brass and the Glock in full recoil which was pretty cool.

    I recently shot some video and played it back on my Sony Bravia 50″ TV (I am NOT, in general, a Sony fanboy, as I currently own Nikon, Canon and Lumix cameras) via the mini HDMI port on the camera. It was truly excellent. Another review here on Amazon from an obvious video enthusiast called it “amazing”. I won’t dispute that. The quality of the audio seem pretty darn good. the microphone sits on top of what would be the pentaprism in an arc. Previously, my videos from the Canon G12 have been on my computer monitor. I am not doing a pixel peeping comparison. Based on my experience and web site reviews the video capabilities are probably best in class.

    Shot to shot comparison is: A65 is sharper, but with better color rendition. The only thing the 5100 MAY have over the A65 is perhaps a slightly stronger flash, but not by much. a November 11th review on a German camera web site came out and declared the best camera under 1000 euros. I think the camera has maybe two weakness (or maybe two characteristics that are not better than a Canon or Nikon): the first is that the flash is good but the Nikon may be a bit better. But no one matches Nikon on that. The second is that at high ISOs the quality MAY fall off a little more quickly than comparable Nikon or Canon offerings. That MAY be a tradeoff from having 24m pixels. I say that…

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  3. 52 of 56 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    To A65 or to A55? That is the Question.., November 14, 2011
    This review is from: Sony A65 24.3 MP Digital SLR with Translucent Mirror Technology – Body Only (Electronics)

    Sony A55 vs. A65: is Newer Really Better?

    When Sony released info on the Nex-5N, NEX-7, a65 and a77 models, I decided that the technological leaps on the new line was enough to make me a believer. What really put me into the Sony system over Canon and Nikon was the lower price points on the Sony lenses. Yeah, they don’t have as many lenses as the Big Two, but I don’t know any photographers with 25+ lenses in their closet, either. The NEX-5N looked nice but I like viewfinders and didn’t want to be gouged on that accessory. The NEX-7–while pricey–still doesn’t have a release date. The a65 was priced below the a77 by almost $500, so that was a no-brainer, but was it $200-worth more than the a55, a camera that–for the most part–touts a devout ownership?

    I actually bought the a65 and the a55 at the same time, opting for the a65 because of its corrected overheating issue while filming video (the tie-breaker for many) and the a55 because, aside from the overheating issue (a “logical” deal-breaker for many with the arrival of the a65), it offers just about everything else the a65 does, minus some cosmetic differences and a handful of megapixels most of us will never use or need.

    First, the differences. The a65′s swivel LCD is a nice little touch over the a55′s traditional vertical flip-out. With the rotating swivel I was able to take shots by holding the camera down low and high over my head. The LCD view on this unit is crystal clear. The electronic viewfinder on the a65 is superior to the a55. (**I’m not going to get into the differences between the OVF and Sony’s EVF; if you are reading this, it’s because you’re either used to EVFs in general, don’t mind them, or think Sony cameras are cool, regardless.) The EVF here offers a FULL view of my shots. Also, if you use the EVF instead of the LCD, there is a level meter that basically tells you if your shot is in focus, and if your horizon/vanishing points are perfectly level; this is invaluable if you’re taking landscape or wide shots. When shooting people it eventually recognizes redundant faces and will instantly articulate in on the principle person you’re shooting automatically if they are in a crowd or shot with multiple people; this I also found to be a rather nice innovation and would be tremendous if I were shooting a wedding and only cared about the bride, for example. The thing that I liked most about the a65 over the a55 however was completely unexpected: on the a65 there is a dedicated ISO button next to the aperture/shutter wheel, and next to it is a dedicated exposure button that will give you accurate adjustments in the EVF before you shoot. AWESOME. After a couple hours of shooting with this unit I could easily toggle between the Aperture, ISO and exposure intuitively by simply moving my finger slightly from one button to the next. In this regard, making on the fly adjustments while shooting on the street was a snap.

    One cosmetic/function quirk that really bugged me on the a65: the frame-zoom button is in a weird place. Located in the top right behind the wheel and shutter button, I kept hitting it by accident and it was quite annoying. I also didn’t like how it basically took me a day and a half to 1) find the playback function for video and 2) toggle back and forth between video and regular picture playback mode. After two days I still didn’t know how to download the video off of the card. It was like Easter egg hunting! Also, some of the novelty shooting camera modes looked like fun when I first powered up, but I quickly realised that the shooting potential of this camera was so great that I’d actually be doing a disservice by being too cute with the toy functions. The regular shooting and BW modes were all I truly needed to get really impressive results.

    The a55 by contrast shoots just a clip slower¬¬–though the AF is just as snappy–with little discernable difference, unless you put the camera in review mode to look at shots after you take them, then it sorta bricks out for longer seconds than its successor. (**On the a65 the review mode is default to OFF.) The a55 is also decidedly lighter in weight. I will note that because I have egregiously long fingers, it was actually a less comfortable handle than the a65, and I almost felt like the two models are specifically tailored to different hand-types. Actually, this is a BIG DEAL if you don’t care about cute functions: if you have little hands and generally prefer light equipment, the a55 (at $200 less I remind you) carries more value in day-to-day carrying and shooting. If you have bigger hands, the a65 is an absolute must, you will thank me later.

    Finally, the video mode. On the a65 the quality on the 60i is far superior to anything I’ve ever seen on a DSLR, hands down. I actually wanted the a65 because it shot in “cinematic” 24p, but I can attest that compared to the 60i on this unit it left a lot to be desired. If you are…

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