If you are considering taking the plunge and purchasing your first serious digital single lens reflex (DSLR) camera, then Sony's latest models may well be the ones for you.

Rumours about the pending launch of these latest two DSLR cameras from Sony's Alpha series - the DSLR-A290 and DSLR-A390 -have been swirling around the internet for a while now, with Sony finally officially announcing the launch of its new cameras this week.

They are being pitched at the entry-level DSLR consumer, and are updates to the current Sony A230 and A380 cameras.

Ideal for the first-timer

"Ideal for first-time DSLR users, the DSLR-A390 (α390) and DSLR-A290 (α290) offer a dramatic step up in picture quality and creative options from point-and-shoot compact cameras," Sony's press release informs us.

"Just as importantly, they're incredibly easy to use, even if you've never handled a DSLR before."

Both cameras feature 14-megapixel CCD sensors, a new grip design, an updated button layout, a max ISO of 3200, Bravia Sync support, amini-HDMI port for connecting to HDTVs and 2.7-inch,230,400-dotTFT LCD displays.

The slightly pricier gap A390 features a tilting screen, unlike the fixed display on the A290. But both are

"Even DSLR novices will find it brilliantly simple to explore the generous creative features of both new cameras. The intuitive Graphic Display makes it easy to understand the relation between shutter speed and aperture, plus the effects of your chosen exposure settings on the final picture.

"The Help Guide offers clear, concise explanations of camera functions, illustrated by a sample image to show the results you'll achieve. Quick access to shooting and playback function menus is streamlined by colourful on-screen icons."

Sony's new A390 and A290 DSLR cameras from Sony will be available at some point later this summer. UK pricing is still to be confirmed.