The a700's body is constructed with an aluminum chassis and a strong, lightweight magnesium alloy shell . The body is designed to resist dust and moisture and the aluminum chassis is 5% lighter and 3x stronger than the older alpha 100.
The alpha 700 accepts an array of precision lenses, including the new Sony wide-aperture zoom lenses that perform brilliantly over a broad range of
focal lengths, Sony “G” Series lenses with advanced motorized auto focusing, Carl Zeiss® coated lenses, and a plethora of Minolta
a-mount lenses. Sony lists 24 lenses, including 3 new items, that are available as optional accessories for the a700.
Sony's has created three new lenses designed to take advantage of APS-size CCD imagers like the Exmor™ sensor of the DSLR-A700. The $580
f3.5 to f/5.6, 16mm to 105mm lens (shown above) providing the same angle of view as a 24mm to 157.5mm lens on a 35mm camera.
Also new is the $550 f3.5 to f/6.3, 18mm to 250mm (27mm to 375mm equivalent). And the f4.5 to f/5.6 70mm to 300 mm (105mm to 450mm
equivalent) lens that incorporates a supersonic motor in its autofocus system for smoother operation.
These Sony lenses have a sophisticated Multi-Element Design of 16 lens elements in 13 groups to correct visual aberrations across the entire zoom
range and help reduce weight. The ED (Extra-low Dispersion) Glass lens elements minimize flare and greatly reduce chromatic aberration,
giving you sharp, clear shots even at full telephoto extension.
The flip-up flash covers a wide focal range, synchronizes at 1/250 sec., supports red-eye reduction and slow flash features as well as manual flash mode to set flash intensity. A wireless flash signal is available for external flash synchronization.
The DSLR-A700 supports full-featured flash photography combining the built-in flash and external flash units such as the Sony HVL-F56AM (shown above), and HVL-F36AM (as well as Minolta MAXXUM 5600HS and 3600HS), allowing you to take advantage of wireless high-speed and TTL flash, rear-curtain flash synchronization, bounce flash and advanced off-camera setups for pro-level flash shooting.
Off-camera flash is possible with the FA-CS1AM Off-camera Shoe and FA-EC1AM extension,
FA-MC1AM multi flash and FA-CC1AM Off-camera cables.
The eye-level viewfinder uses a fixed optical glass pentaprism with a field of view of approximately 95%. It has a 25mm eye-relief from the eyepiece, 21 mm from the eyepiece frame at -1 diopter. The eyepiece cup is removable. Sony's web site lists 9 Eyepiece Correctors available as accessories.
The viewfinder magnification is 0.83x (with 50mm lens focused on infinity) and has
a 3.0 to +1.0 m-1 dioptric adjustment.
Inside the viewfinder is an screen showing the Local Auto Focus area, the Spot AF area, the Spot metering area and the 16:9 aspect shooting area. Along the bottom you can see a digital status line that displays flash compensation, flash status, wireless flash status, high-speed sync, manual focus, focus, shutter speed, aperture, EV scale, AE lock, shots remaining and the anti shake warning.
The a700's Auto Focus system utilizes 11 wide-area sensors, including a center dual cross sensor with two horizontal and
two vertical line sensors for AF precision. An F2.8 line sensor leverages the brightness of fast aperture lenses
for even greater precision. And the fast focus speed is provided by improved algorithms and
a high-torque focusing drive motor.
On the front of the camera below the lens you can see the Focus Mode lever which allows you to toggle between the autofocusing modes and manual focusing.
Four focusing modes assure optimum performance in a wide range of situations. As marked on the Focus Mode lever there's "S" indicating the AF-S mode for single-shot AF, the "A" symbolizing the AF-A mode that automatically switches from single-shot to continuous AF when it detects that your subject is moving, the "C" for the AF-C mode for continuous AF, and then the "M" for the MF manual focus mode.
The Eye-Start® autofocus system begins focusing when you touch the sensor on the grip and bring your eye to the camera. This option can be turned off in the camera configuration menu.
Another focusing option that is particularly useful for macro and portrait photography is Direct Manual Focus. When the shutter release is pressed halfway in this mode, the focusing mechanism's internal clutch is released as soon as the AF system locks onto the subject, allowing you to manually rotate the focusing ring to fine- tune the image. Combining the convenience of AF with the enhanced creative control of MF, it lets you enjoy the benefits of both without switching focus modes.
Exposure MeteringA high precision 40-segment honeycomb pattern metering system provides optimum exposure control for various lighting conditions. User selectable metering modes: Honeycomb-pattern, Center-weighted averaging or Spot metering. Metering range: EV 1 - 20 (EV 4 - 20 in spot metering)
The exclusive Zone Matching system ensures the best possible exposure
control in even the most extreme of lighting situations. When ordinary dSLRs would
produce a "white-out," the DSLR-A700 emphasizes highlights while retaining subtle tones.
And it captures noise-free images in dimly-lit indoor conditions.
US visitors Alpha DSLR-A700 Digital Camera - Body Only (12.24MP, 4288x2856, CF/MS Duo/MS PRO Duo Card Slot)
UK visitors DSLR-A700 Digital Camera Body Only
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