Sony, pre-Kina leaks

It seems that Sony is not as tight-lipped as usual in the preparation of the upcoming Photokina show in Köln, Germany at the end of next month. The offering is now nearly certain: 4 Alpha cameras and a set of lenses can be expected. They should be announced on August 24 (next week).

  • Alpha 33 (a pellix camera with a 14 MP sensor)
  • Alpha 55 (a pellix camera with a 16.7 MP sensor, 10 fps, ISO 100-25600, 15-point AF, EVF – all to be confirmed)
  • Alpha 560 (with 14MP sensor, 5 fps, ISO 100-12800, 15-point AF, swivel display – near certain feature set)
  • Alpha 580 (same as A560, with 16MP sensor)

Note: Pellix is the name usually applied to describe a camera where there is no mobile mirror, but a pellix semi-transparent mirror which is providing a simultaneous and continuous AF while bringing light to the photo/video sensor. For more information about it, see the Wikipedia articles in both English and German. The presence of Pellix should also allow to keep a LiveView operation during the photo/video capture (probably in association with an Electronic View Finder or EVF).

Images of the A55 and A33


Alpha 33 - front

Alpha 33 - front

Alpha 55 - front

Alpha 55 - front

Alpha 55 - back

Alpha 55 - back

Alpha 55 - back

Alpha 55 - back

Alpha 55 - front

Alpha 55 - front

Alpha 55 - back

Alpha 55 - back

Images from DChome

A33/A55 size

What is now certain is that the Alpha 33 and Alpha 55 will be very small indeed. They are smaller than the smallest existing Alpha cameras (the Alpha 290). They are nearly as small as the NEX-5 camera.

Thanks to SonyAlphaRumors, you can see a marketing-based and meaningful size comparison:

Alpha 33 vs. Samsung NX10 vs. Panasonic G2

Alpha 33 vs. Samsung NX10 vs. Panasonic G2

As was reported here about a month ago, Canon does not believe that it is necessary to leave the traditional APS-C DSLR format factor to compete with the EVIL cameras. Sony seems to have understood this too. But they decided to provide both the (still?) smaller ones (NEX series) and continuously shrinking ones (Alpha series). It will be interesting to see how this works in the end.

At least, Canon appears right and we can expect to see similar comparisons appearing with Canon bodies of the near future.

Compatible lenses for NEX

Additionally, some companies are rumored to be interested in providing a real competition in terms of lenses for the NEX camera range (Sony will no longer be alone). If Zeiss and Leica are actually present there in a few weeks, it will mean that this NEX camera series will certainly be a huge success, if only because of the large advertisement effort supported by several companies at the same time. However, it is nearly impossible to sort out the good information and the false rumors in what is said from all sides.