Features & Controls (cont.)

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sony_a550_tilting_lcd.jpgMounted on the back of the A550 is a large, wide-view 3-inch Clear Photo LCD with 921,600-pixels of resolution. Unlike most DSLR's, this display can extend away from the body and tilt up or down. This offers greater versatility in framing your images with Live View mode as well as allows you to better see camera settings when shooting a fixed subject using a tripod. It can be used as the recording information display, for accessing the menus and is an excellent display for in-field review of your pictures.

The LCD monitor works as a Recording information display, allowing seamless operation with camera settings and comprehensive shooting information displayed, indicated with large, easy to read text. Aiding ease of use further, the display automatically switches from horizontal to vertical format when shooting in the upright "portrait" orientation.

The amount of time the display remains active is user selectable (10s, 20s, 30s, 1m, 5m, or 30m). When you put your eye up to the viewfinder it automatically turns off the LCD's backlight.



sony_a550_display_modes.jpgYou can choose the display mode to be Graphical (left) or Standard (right).



sony_a550_backt.jpgControls on the back: At the top left you can see the Menu and Display buttons. To the right of the optical viewfinder you can see the Smart teleconverter, the  AV (Exposure) button (which also serves as the "zoom out" button in playback mode) and the AE Lock button (which also serves as the "zoom in" button in playback mode).  Next is the Fn (Function) button, which pulls up a shortcut menu with access to: AF mode, AF area, Metering mode, D-Range Optimizer, White balance, and Creative style modes. The 4-way controller is used for menu navigation, scrolling through stored images, and offers shortcuts to several camera functions: "Up" controls the LCD display, "Right" toggles Flash mode, "Down" adjust sensitivity, "Left" changes the Drive mode. Lastly, we have the Playback and Delete buttons.




sony_550_controls_grips.jpgThere are several controls located on the top of the grip side of the camera. At the front edge just below the shutter release is the control dial which controls a variety of settings within the context of the camera's current mode of operation. The shutter release is inset and surrounded by the camera's power switch. Below that is the MF checkLV button. when pressed, the OV mirror slides out of the way and the image is magnified and displayed on the LCD to check the cameras focus. then to the left is the switch that changes the view between the OVF and the LCD. Then along the bottom is the D-Range (Dynamic) button, the drive mode button (7 modes to choose from), and the ISO button.



sony_550_controls_dial.jpgThe Mode Dial is located on the top left, and has positions for Full-Auto, Program, Aperture priority, Shutter priority, Manual, Night Portrait, Sunset, Sports, Close-up, Landscape, Portrait, and Auto No-Flash modes.




sony_550_sd_prostick.jpgImages are stored on either Sony Memory Stick Duo cards or SD/SDHC memory cards. Both can be loaded at the same time, but you have to tell the camera which media to use by the MSduo/SD swtich inside the memory card/IO compartment. Sony recommends using their Memory Stick PRO Duo cards with this camera.


Approx Storage Capacities

Chart reflects capacities for SD cards only.
sony_a550_sd_storage.jpg



sony_a550_ports.jpg



I/O Ports: Contained inside one compartment is the combination USB 2.0 hi-speed digital port and the Video Out port (selectable for NTSC or PAL television systems) as well as a HDMI type C minijack for High Definition output. No A/V cable is supplied with the camera. On the front of the hand-grip (not shown) is an infrared sensor for use with an optional wireless remote, also there is a port for use with either the RM-S1AM or RM-L1AM wired Remote Commanders. Lastly is the DC in port.



sony_550_battery.jpg

The DSLR-A550 is powered by a Sony NP-FM500H 8.7v 1650 mAh "InfoLITHIUM" rechargeable battery pack. Sony claims the pack will allow you to capture approx. 950 pictures when using the optical viewfinder or up to 480 images with Live View (using CIPA standard.) There is a 5-level battery condition indicator on the LCD display.

The supplied BC-VM10 battery charger requires approx. 235 minutes to charge a fully depleted battery pack or 175 minutes for a normal charge. You can also purchase the optional AC-PW10AM AC Adaptor to power the camera for extended use in a studio type situation.

Visitors of Steves can visit the stores below for real-time pricing and availability. You can also find hot, soon to expire online offers on a variety of cameras and accessories at our very own Camera Deals page.

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