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Sony Alpha DSLR A850

alaTest has collected and analyzed 115 reviews from magazines and websites. Opinions about the viewfinder and image quality are overall positive. The usability and performance are also mentioned favorably, but the low light performance and flash get less positive opinions. The software and control panel get mixed opinions.

value for money, performance, usability, image quality, viewfinder

video, flash, low-light

We analyzed user and expert ratings, product age and more factors. Compared to other Digital SLR Cameras the Sony Alpha DSLR A850 is awarded an overall alaScore™ of 92/100 = Excellent quality.

See all Sony Digital SLR Cameras

Review analysis

(Based on 115 reviews)

Expert Reviews  

User Reviews  

Showing 46 review(s)

Expert Reviews User Reviews
Showing 1 - 10 of 46 Show Reviews: in English | in other languages (51)

Expert review by:

Sony Alpha 850 Review


This is the first camera to be reviewed using our new 'Quick Review' format. From now on we will be using this format for cameras that are in terms of operation close and in terms of image quality fundamentally identical to either their predecessors or...

Class-leading resolution (as long as your lenses are good enough) ; Very solid build quality, environmental sealing ; Intuitive operation and uncluttered control and menu system ; Excellent out of camera JPEG results with superb tonality, dynamic...

Noise reduction settings applied to raw as well as JPEG files - cannot be 'turned off for raw but left on for JPEGs' (as is normal practice) ; Relatively high levels of noise at anything over ISO 400 (ISO 6400 is of very, very limited use) ; JPEGs a...

The Sony DSLR-A850 is the most affordable full-frame DSLR on the market. It's a no-nonsense photographers' camera that delivers excellent image quality at base ISO but cannot quite keep up with the competition at higher sensitivities.

Expert review by:

Sony DSLR-A850 Review


Sony has created a professional grade dSLR model that challenges the competition with it's $1999.95 price point for a full frame dSLR, with image quality and resolution rivalling far more expensive camera models. If you want the highest resolution...

Superb Pro Level Build Quality with Weather Sealing; Very Comfortable size and weight for a body of this caliber; Lower Price point than competing full frame models; Unsurpassed resolution in a dSLR, regardless of price; Superb High Resolution LCD;...

Slight higher noise than competing models shooting JPEG; Slower (3fps) frame rate compared to higher priced dSLR models; Not as many AF points as some Pro Grade cameras ; Bottom Line ; Sony has created a professional grade dSLR model that challenges...

Sony has created a professional grade dSLR model that challenges the competition with it's $1999.95 price point for a full frame dSLR, with image quality and resolution rivalling far more expensive camera models. If you want the highest resolution...


Expert review by:

Sony alpha DSLR-A850


Even in this era of rapidly plunging HDTV, Blu-ray disc player and game console prices, some devices remain very expensive. Case in point: full-frame DSLRs. These cameras use sensors that are the same size as a frame of 35mm film, so photo quality is...

Great 24-megapixel images; intelligent Preview a real aid; built-in image sensor-shift stabilization; tweaks galore

Still expensive; noise at ISO 1250 and higher; poorly positioned preview button; no built-in flash; it's a must-have add-on; no Live View or HD video

It's hard to call a $1,999 DSLR a great deal, but the Sony alpha DSLR-A850 is one.


Expert review by:

Sony Alpha DSLR-A850 Quick Review


When the Sony DSLR-A900 was introduced in September 2008 it looked like an incredibly good deal: a full-frame DSLR with a weather-sealed pro body and a whopping 24.6 million pixels ...

Expert review by:

Sony A850 DSLR


An overall assessment of the Sony A850 Digital SLR is that it is very good, even with the pros and cons. The pros are as follows: 1) this is the most affordable full frame 24-megapixel camera currently available; 2) it produces sharp images and...

Amazing- most affordable full-framed 24.6-megapixel digital SLRFull-fledged- too many features to list, most of which enhance imagesDurable- magnesium-allow body safely resists wear, tear, and dustVersatile- produces sharp images with excellent dynamic...

Suffers- noisy images at high-ISO, slow shooting speeds

The Sony Alpha DSLR-A850 is yet another stunning camera developed by...

Expert review by:

Sony Alpha 850 review video


A look at all the main features of Sony's full-frame DSLR with sample pictures In this guide to the best D-SLRs on the market, Ali Jennings from Digital Camera takes a look at the Sony Alpha 850, the full-frame DSLR to rival the Canon 5D Mark II and...

Expert review by:

Sony’s Alpha A850; 24MP In A Full-Frame D-SLR


Much has been made of the difference in image quality between so-called full-frame and APS-C-sized sensors. There's no doubt that full frame offers more freedom to crop and make, all things being equal, higher quality enlargements, and especially the...

I would suggest that there be a blinkie-only display, as that's how I and other folks I know handle their exposure in the field, relying on the blinkies to notify of dangerous overexposure. The way it is set up now has the blinkie image way too small

Expert review by:

Sony Alpha DSLR-A850 Review


Sony certainly took the photography world by surprise when it announced its full-frame, 24 megapixel Alpha A900 DSLR.

Natural colors ; Sophisticated features ; Sub $2000 price

Proprietary hotshoe ; Slower 3 fps burst mode ; Noisy at high ISO

Since image noise is often more prominent on skin, noise was slightly less visible on other areas of the image (including the front of the model's dress). Best bet for shooting high ISOs on the A850? Turn off noise reduction, shoot RAW and deal with it...

Expert review by:

Camera Test: Sony Alpha 850


Just a few years ago, a full-frame DSLR would have set you back as much as a late-model used car. Now, Sony is offering its new 24.6MP Alpha 850 for a cool two grand (body only)

Expert review by:

Sony Alpha A850 Digital SLR Review: Field Test Report


In spite of the moderate price, it's identical to the A900 in most aspects, including the 24×36mm CMOS sensor with 24.6 million effective pixels. Each light-sensitive dot is quite large: 5.9 microns squared. In addition to excellent light gathering...

Considering the $2000 price, the Sony A850 is an absolute bargain in terms of resolution, versatility and acceptable speed as well as the built-in image stabilizer, excellent viewfinder and high-res LCD. In my estimation, the benefits provided by...

Product Specifications

Inheriting technology and design from the flagship a900, the a850 places the 24.6-megapixel resolution of the 35mm full-frame Exmor CMOS sensor as well as the stunning response and imaging performance of Dual BIONZ processing engines in the hands of more discerning photographers whose skills and vision deserve the best. If only superior detail, natural color and gradation, intuitive handling, and outstanding fit-and-finish will do, this is the camera for you. This is a camera for the serious photographer? Whether you're serious about artistic expression, professional quality, or simply photographic enjoyment, the a850 will help you take your images to the next level. The dream of image quality approaching medium-format standards with digital SLR handling and speed is finally within reach.


Battery Form Factor:Manufacturer specific
Manufacturer Battery Name:Sony NP-FM500H

Digital Camera

Digital Camera Type:SLR
Supported Flash Memory:Memory Stick PRO Duo / Microdrive / Memory Stick Duo / CompactFlash / Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo

Dimensions & Weight


Display (Projector)

Diagonal Size:3in
Diagonal Size (metric):7.6cm
Display Form Factor:Built-in
Technology:TFT active matrix
Type:LCD display


Packaged Quantity:1
Product Line:Sony a (alpha)

Lens System

Lens for SD:Body only

Optical Sensor

Optical Sensor Size:24 x 35.9mm
Optical Sensor Size (metric):24 x 35.9 mm
Optical Sensor Type:Exmor CMOS
Sensor Dust Reduction: Yes
Sensor Resolution:24.6Megapixel

Optical System

Built-in Optical Image Stabilizer: Yes
Image Stabilizer:Optical (SteadyShot INSIDE)

Optical Viewfinder

Type:Fixed eye-level pentaprism

Storage Floppy Drive

Type: None

Video Input

ISO (Max):6400
Light Sensitivity:ISO auto (200-1600) / ISO 100-6400
Special Effects:Portrait / Landscape / Sunset / Vivid / Neutral / Sepia / Black & White / Clear / Deep / Light / Night View / Autumn Leaves
Still Image Format:RAW + JPEG
Type:Digital camera


Viewfinder Type:Optical