Features & Controls (cont.)
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
You can choose the display mode to be Graphical (left) or Standard (right).
Controls 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.
The 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.
Images 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 CapacitiesChart reflects capacities for SD cards only.
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.
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.