Sony Alpha A330 Review
If you're looking for a great entry level DSLR, the Sony Alpha A330L is a solid choice. Most people after graduating from an advanced point and shoot camera usually buy a camera like this. And for good reason - it allows so much more flexibility than any advanced point and shoot, and produces images that point and shoots can't.
The great thing about the A330L is that image stabilization is built in. Therefore, the cost of lenses will be much cheaper than with other cameras. Any Sony or Minolta lens will be compatible with the A330L camera. In fact, you can probably save a load of money buying an older Minolta lens through online auctions and using it with this body.
We also liked the build of the Alpha A330L. Holding it in our hands, it feels great. The grip is comfortable and feels pretty light. Many reviews we read seem to exaggerate how awkward the body design is. We disagree. It did not feel awkward at all.
The A330L is also relatively flexible and versatile. You can choose to use it as an automatic point and shoot, or use it manually. Every setting is quite easy to adjust from aperture to brightness and white balance. The only minor gripe we have is that some of the settings are buried in the menu. It could take awhile (and frustrating moments) to navigate the menus to change some settings on the fly.
If you do decide to shoot manually, Sony added a new thing called Creative Style. This lets you tweak your shot even more. You can choose modes such as night shot, vivide color, sunset, etc. to take your shot. For each of these modes, you can change the sharpness, contrast, and saturation. So if you're an intermediate photographer and want to learn more skills, the A330L will definitely cater to your needs.
Performance - although the Sony Alpha A330L isn't one of the fastest in its class, it definitely passes. The AF, though is really fast (it has 9 AF points), as well as switching between Live View and the optical view finder.
We tested this camera, trying to shoot a high school football game, and we were able to shoot relatively well without blur. Other cameras in this class don't perform as well than the A330L in this aspect. Live view is definitely one of the best features in this camera.
The image quality for the A330L is as good as those of other entry level DSLRs in the market. Of course, it all depends on the skills of the photographer but if you're good, photos should turn out clear, sharp, with accurate colors and good exposures. We took over 50 pictures with the A330L and they all looked great. As long you stay below an ISO of 3200.
We recommend setting the resolution properly when shooting because this camera does produce relatively huge files.
Another cool minor thing we liked about the A330L is the fact that is holds both an SD memory card, as well as a Memory Stick Duo at once. Yup, when one card is out of memory, the camera automatically switches to the other. Quite convenient, we must say.
The battery life is nothing impressive, it's fairly average supporting 500 shots or so before oyu need to recharge. We recommend using a vertical battery grip, which gives you more battery power.
This camera does let you record video, but after testing it for a few minutes, we think it's something you shouldn't use as a buying criteria. The video quality is acceptable, but nothing to drool over.
- 10.2 megapixels
- Live View with fast auto focus
- 2.7 LCD screen
- 2.5 frames per second with optical viewfinder
- Supports up to ISO 3200
- Battery Life: 510 shots
- Extremely light
- Works as an automatic point/shoot and has flexibility - Outstanding image quality
- Supports HDMI Output
- Menu system can be unintuitive
Though Canon and Nikon cameras are definitely more popular, we don't think you should just ignore other brands like Sony.
The Alpha A330L is a great entry level DSLR with many features other cameras in this class don't have. It's perfect for the beginner making the jump from point and shoots to DSLRs or the intermediate photographer. You can pretty much do everything a pro can do with this camera - there's lots of creative control in your hands. Or you can just use it as a point and shoot, and have everything automated. Either way, the image quality will definitely be better than any point and shoot.
We think this is an underrated camera that delivers a great bang for your buck. Sony - great job on the Alpha A330L.
Rating: 4.8 out of 5
Where to Buy It:
Lowest Price: Amazon for $439.99.
Note: This is a 20% off Amazon coupon and one of the best deals for the Sony Alpha A330.
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|Amazon||$439.99 (Cheapest Price)|
Prices last updated on: Wed, 16 Aug 2017 22:49:27 PDT