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Sony Alpha a57 review

The sharp-shooting DSLT that clocks up 12fps

Our Verdict

For

  • Good build quality
  • Many controls and shortcuts
  • Versatile articulated LCD
  • Decent EVF
  • Range of exposure modes

Against

  • Menu not that clear
  • Some functions unavailable in some modes
  • No built-in GPS
  • High price

We shoot a specially designed chart in carefully controlled conditions and the resulting images are analysed using DXO Analyzer software to generate the data to produce the graphs below.

A high signal to noise ratio (SNR) indicates a cleaner and better quality image.

For more more details on how to interpret our test data, check out our full explanation of our noise and dynamic range tests.

Sony Alpha 57 review: Signal to noise ratio

JPEG images from the Sony Alpha 57 shows good signal to noise ratio results across the sensitivity range. At all sensitivities the results between the cameras are close with the Nikon D5100 and Canon 600D just beating the a57 at ISO 100, however at all other sensitivities the a57 has the edge.

Raw images

Sony Alpha 57 review: TIFF signal to noise ratio

TIFF images (After conversion from raw) show that whilst the Nikon D5100 beats the at a sensitivity of ISO 100 at all other sensitivities the show better signal to noise ratio results. This chart shows that noise only becomes really apparent in images from ISO 12800.

Dynamic range

Sony Alpha 57 review: JPEG dynamic range

This chart shows the Alpha 57 has consistent dynamic range results between sensitivities of ISO 100-1600 beating the Canon 600D, Nikon D5100 and improving on the performance of the Alpha 65.

Sony Alpha 57 review: TIFF dynamic range

This chart shows that the Sony Alpha 57's TIFF files (After conversion from raw) have a high dynamic range between sensitivities of ISO 100 and 1600, and across the rest of the sensitivity range beat the comparison cameras. This show that at all sensitivities the a57 is able to capture a good tonal graduation in both the shadows and highlights.

Tech Specs

Product TypeDigital SLT Camera
Battery Size SupportedProprietary Battery Size
Maximum Video Resolution1920 x 1080
TouchscreenNo
Effective Camera Resolution16.1 Megapixel
GPSNo
USBYes
PictBridgeNo
Product Familyalpha A
Image StabilizationOptical
Optical Zoom3.1x, 3.1x (Lens 1) - 3.6x (Lens 2)
Digital ZoomNo
Brand NameSony
FeaturesLive View, Self-timer, Face Detection, Face Recognition, Smile Detection, Continuous Shooting Mode, 3D Panorama
Screen Size7.6 cm (3")
Video FormatsAVCHD, MPEG-4 AVC
Viewfinder TypeElectronic
Weight (Approximate)539 g
Maximum Image Resolution4912 x 3264
Maximum Frame Rate60 fps
Number of Batteries Supported1
Battery Built-inNo
Battery RechargeableYes
Battery IncludedYes
Display Screen TypeLCD
Image Sensor TypeCMOS
Total Camera Resolution16.7 Megapixel
HDMIYes
Camera AssemblyBody with Lens Kit
HD Movie ModeYes
Battery Model SupportedNP-FM500H
Memory Card SupportedMemory Stick PRO Duo, Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo, Secure Digital (SD) Card, Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) Card, Secure Digital Extended Capacity (SDXC), Eye-Fi Card
Height97.5 mm
Width132.1 mm
Depth80.7 mm
Autofocus Points15
Product SeriesA
Focal Length18 mm to 55 mm (Lens 1) - 55 mm to 200 mm (Lens 2)
Image FormatsJPEG, MPO, RAW
Audio FormatsAC3, AAC
Flash ModesAuto Flash, Fill Flash, Slow Sync, Red-eye Reduction, Flash Exposure Compensation, Rear Flash Sync, High Speed Sync
Focus ModesAuto, Manual
ManufacturerSony Corporation
Product ModelSLT-A57
Product NameA57 Translucent Mirror Interchangeable Lens Camera
Product Linealpha
Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part NumberSLTA57Y.CEH
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.sony.co.uk
Marketing InformationSpeedy shooting plus limitless creative options

Serious quality and powerful creative options have never been so accessible. The SLT-A57 shares many features found in range-topping cameras from Sony, including super-fast shooting with continuous autofocus. Explore the possibilities of flawless images and Full HD video.

Battery Life590 Shot
Package Contents
  • A57 Translucent Mirror Interchangeable Lens Camera
  • SAL-1855 Lens
  • SAL-55200 Lens
  • NP-FM500H Battery
  • Software Media
Display Resolution921600 Pixel
Limited Warranty1 Year
Built-in DevicesMicrophone, Speaker