Sony A580 review

As its best-specified APS-C DSLR, does the Sony A580 marry its competent feature set with commendable results?

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Sony a580

Seasoned DSLR users may be inclined to take the Sony A580 less seriously as a DSLR, given some if its more novelty inclusions such as the Sweep Panorama and Smile Shutter options. This would be a shame, as neither of these features should eclipse the solid feature set and fine performance of the Alpha 580 that makes it compare well with its peers.

As an all-rounder performer it shines, with its high-resolution sensor and articulated LCD screen making it ideal for still-life photography, and its speedy focusing system and 7fps burst rate meaning that it's not out of place when action presents itself either.

It's easy to see, therefore, why the camera may appeal to a range of users, from first-time DSLR buyer's with a little money to spend, through to Alpha fans looking for the next upgrade option from their current model.

The issues regarding image quality are unfortunate, although the use of a good optic, correct technique and careful post-processing can comfortably get round these.

The fine results which may be obtained from its video function also score it a few extra points, too, although anyone looking for a capable video-shooting camera should also add Sony's SLT A33 and Alpha 55 to their shortlist, both of which use the same Alpha mount as the Sony A580. While not strictly DSLRs in themselves, the fluid autofocusing available during video recording make them better suited where manual control isn't likely to be used.

Features: 4/5
Build quality: 3/5
Image Quality: 3/5
Value: 4/5

Overall: 3/5

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Tech Specs

Product TypeDigital SLR Camera with Lens
Battery Size SupportedProprietary Battery Size
Maximum Video Resolution1920 x 1080
Effective Camera Resolution16.2 Megapixel
Wide AngleNo
Product Familyalpha
HD Movie ModeYes
Memory Card SupportedSecure Digital (SD) Card, Secure Digital High Capacity (SDHC) Card, Secure Digital Extended Capacity (SDXC), Memory Stick Duo, Memory Stick PRO Duo, Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo
Image StabilizationOptical
Optical Zoom3x
Digital ZoomNo
Brand NameSony
FeaturesManual White Balance, Aperture Priority, External Flash Shoe, Continuous Shooting Mode, Face Detection, Live View
Screen Size7.6 cm (3")
Video FormatsMP4
Viewfinder TypeSLR
Weight (Approximate)599 g
Image Sensor Size23.50 mm x 15.60 mm
Maximum Image Resolution4912 x 3264
Display Screen TypeLCD
Height104 mm
Width137 mm
Depth84 mm
Focal Length18 mm to 55 mm (Lens 1)
Image FormatsRAW, JPEG
Focus ModesAuto, Manual
ManufacturerSony Corporation
Product ModelDSLR-A580
Product Namealpha DSLR-A580 Digital SLR Camera
Product Linealpha
Exposure Control
  • Program Auto
  • Shutter Priority
  • Aperture Priority
  • Manual
Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part NumberDSLRA580L.CEH
Manufacturer Website Address
Marketing Information

Step up to new levels of DSLR refinement and performance. Enjoy all the freedom of Quick AF Live View shooting plus speedy responses, generous creative options and extremely high quality, low noise Full HD video and still images.

Package Contents
  • alpha DSLR-A580 Digital SLR Camera
  • SAL-1855 Lens
  • NP-FM500H Battery
Limited Warranty1 Year