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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply Superb, 23 Oct 2012
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This review is from: Sony SLTA77V.CEH Translucent Mirror Interchangeable Lens Camera (24.3MP) 3.0 inch LCD (Electronics)
I was aprehensive about the EVF before I bought it, but after using for several weeks it is brilliant. Much brighter than an OVF and being able to change ANY setting with it up to your eye is great. I now seldom use the rear screen atall! Overall this is a simply superb camera and I wholeheartedly recommend it to anyone.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well worth the extra, 25 Sep 2013
This review is from: Sony SLTA77V.CEH Translucent Mirror Interchangeable Lens Camera (24.3MP) 3.0 inch LCD (Electronics)
I was concerned at shelling out over 1000 (this was over a year ago when it was new) for a camera, having before made do with the more entry level A100 and A360 respectfully.

I couldnt have been more wrong, this is the most feature packed and exceedingly high performance camera in its price bracket. The sheer amount extra features and details are almost to numerate to list.

First of all - the EVF - my biggest area of concern moving from an SLR to the SLT. I had looked at the A55, and had serious doubts about its ability to cope. Again, completely wrong, the EVF here is every bit the equal on my prior SLRs in terms of quality, and brings the added benefit of bring (customisable) additional infomation.
Teh incredibly flexible screen has made shooting tight areas or unusal angles a breeze. In particular low rockpool photography project i recently completed - the being about to set the camera down on a tripod with a smart remote shutter and the screen flipped back and spunround made some very tight shots that i wouldnt have dared attempt attempt with my prior systems an absolute breeze.

Even little touches like the three level Digital noise reduction/ 6 level HDR function have provided a superb amount of granual control. And unlike certain other bits of software, the HDR affect is very subtle (and saves two copies of the file with and without - which is almost as technically fascinating as it is helpful), rarely producing that overblown surreal look (unless you play with the saturation settings and contrast, at which point you can make it perform that too). The first time you set it to maximum HDR in a high contrast environment and listen to the shutter fire off 12 rapid fire shots like a machine gun.... its an absolute joy.

But for all its incredible versatility, its some of the automatic features that continually impress. The speed and accuracy (and tracking) of the autofocus is outstanding, tracking my dog backwards and forward with not issue (though still has issues with fast moving birds... maybe next generation..). The range of automatic options is impressive, and its been good being able to just hand the camera to a friend and know that even if they leave it on the basic auto mode it will do a great job. To the point that i have now taken to default-leaving it on the intelligent-automatic setting when i finish, in case i need to grab the camera and point at something fleeting with no warning. So far the camera has equitted itself amazingly well at capturing those small fleeting moments at weddings (daughters huging mothers quickly) that knowing that the camera can handle it so well is amazingly reassuring.

Sony has continued to create superb cameras, stacking up against the bigger two remarkably well. A year in this camera has given creative freedoms that i could only dream about with my previous cameras, and every time i see a Nikon or Canon camera in the 800-1000 price bracket, i can help but notice how the features and specs just dont add up.

If you have a legacy collection of lens, i can see sticking with them, but if your tied down i can't recommend this camera enough. More the sufficient autosetting for a novice, complete control for a professional, and a perfect environment for those moving between.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A superb fully featured SLT, 5 Nov 2013
By 
TheProf (UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Sony SLTA77V.CEH Translucent Mirror Interchangeable Lens Camera (24.3MP) 3.0 inch LCD (Electronics)
First of all, check which supplier your camera will be coming from, as some may not be supplying UK stock. This may affect your ability to get Sony UK to undertake a warranty repair, so be vcareful.

Now, as for the camera: This is an immensely rewarding SLT camera to use - I have now owned the camera 9 months, and have previously used the Sony SLT-a57 and Sony's older a700 DSLR. This is a semi-pro model built to a high standard, which feels solid in the hand. Ergonomics are first rate with dials and buttons falling easily to hand, a good, solid grip, fabulous EVF, and plenty of physical controls, including both front and rear control dials, something you do not get with the cheaper a65 model which shares the same 24MP sensor.

Sony really did put a lot of great features into this camera. It has a blisteringly fast FPS burst rate, slightly limited by its buffer size, admittedly, but still very, very fast. That would be no good if it didn't have an excellent AF module to go with this, but it has the best AF module of any Sony SLT bar the pro-level slt-a99 full frame camera. The AF is fast, accurate and flexible in both single shot and continuous modes. Furthermore, micro focus adjust is available so you can tune the AF system to specific lenses (works best with primes but can be of value with zooms too). There are many menu options and settings to get to grips with, but I am a fan of Sony's no-nonsense straightforward interface, which I find quite intuitive. Help is at hand from Gary Friedman's excellent e-book - available here on Amazon or on his own web site - a real bible for a77 owners and well worth the price for a detailed description of all the many features. GPS is a nice feature - it's effective and doesn't drain the battery too quickly (it can of course be turned off). The a77 has the usual array of a range of focus and metering modes - I have found the metering to be pretty good much of the time though I often dial in a little positive compensation (more on this later). The battery is a relatively powerful one (same across my a57, a700 and a77) and good for around 400-500 shots typically. An excellent battery grip is also available for those doing extended shoots or studio work where vertical orientation may be used a lot (no tethering though, sadly).

Much has been written about the output from the 24MP BIONZ sensor in the camera (also shared in the Sony a65 and most likely in at least one Nikon and Pentax DSLR). At low ISO and when matched with a good lens, the IQ can rival that of medium format, at least in terms of resolution (not in gradations or dynamic range). It really can be breathtaking what can be achieved when you learn to get the most out of this camera and sensor. Don't think you have to use the most expensive Carl Zeiss branded or Sony G lenses either - old Minolta lenses can work very well with the a77 as can highly rated but affordable ones like Sigma's 10-20 and Tamron's 17-50, both of which I have found to perform extremely well with the a77 (watch out for compatability with some older Sigma lenses though - consult the web site Dyxum for further info). I have found the sensor to produce sharp images with wonderful color. I shoot in raw and process in either Adobe Lightroom/ACR or else in DXO Optics Pro version 9. The JPEG engine is only OK, being a bit heavy handed at times with high ISO images - it's hit and miss, sometmies being highly satisfactory, other times being not so good and smudging detail. Raw is the way to go if you have the time and the software to do it (avoid the bundled Sony raw converter as it is hideously slow to use).

The debate about this camera centres on whether or not the 24MP APS-C sensor at its heart is too noisy - it is true that this sensor will leap up and bite you if you under-expose your images - even at base ISO (200) you could get shadow noise in an under-exposed image, and more so than you might expect from other cameras. At high ISO owners have poured over 100% views of raws and complained about more noise than that generated by 16MP sensors. BUT, there are three points to note here: (1) learn to understand the metering on the camera and try not to under-expose unless doing it for artistic reasons; (2) learn not to obsess about 100% pixel peeping view with a 24MP sensor - high ISO images can look a bit worse for wear viewed at 100% magnification on a big monitor but this would equate to a massive poster or billboard size print - it has been demonstrated that when you downsize a77 images to 16MP equivalent they often look as good or better than 16MPimages at high ISO; and (3) shoot raw and use a decent noise cancelling strategy - DXO has automated noise reduction for example, that works very well with the a77 raws - LR is also good, or use NR plugins in Photoshop like Noiseware (very good with a77). I have no worries using ISO 3200 and ISO 6400 raws shot in low light for pro purposes as long as though they have been noise reduced in either DXO or in post processing plugins - if you need ISOs abobe 6400, sure, go for a Canon or Nikon full frame maybe (or tne latest Sony a7r camera). So, in sum, I think the bashing of the 24MP sensor has been over-played especially as almost everyone does some noise reduction in post processing or at raw conversion. I've become a fan of the sensor - shot with care and with a good (not neccessarily expensive) lens, it produces stunning colour and resolution very suitable for pro work.

So, I'm a fan of this camera. Is it perfect? No - it has quirks, such as no auto ISO in M mode, and I find the flash exposure with external flash units can be hit and miss at times (users report the most success with Metz units and the least with Sony units, though some have found firmware updates have solved this (didn't work for me). But it is a joyous camera to use - the immediate feedback you get from the classy EVF is fantastic - it is truly what you see is what you get territory. The EVF is big and clear with plenty of eye relief and is comfortable for wearers of spectacles. At the time it was the best available and is only now being trumped by Olympus in there wonderful micro four thirds cameras. Video is very nice (though capped at a lower max ISO than the 16MP Sony SLTs are) and the AF system excellent for sports, kids running around (much better than my a57 and a700 here) and wildlife. Handling is a dream - making using the camera a pleasure. At times my PC groans when handling the raws and TIFFs from the 24MP sensor so bear in mind your computing and hard disc space requirements! Alos note there is an excellent lens selection available for the Sony alpha mount including superb third party lenses by Tamron, sigma and Tokina, as well as full backwards compatability with the used range of Minolta AF lenses (extensive). Tilt and shift and exotic tele lenses are where there are some gaps in the lens line-up, but these gaps are being filled by third party manufacturers (e.g. Samyang/Rokinon and Sigma).

Writing this in November 2013 this camera is at the end of its life cycle most likely, with a rumoured replacement to be announced around Feb 2014. Current UK prices are around 740 for a genuine UK sourced model, body only. Cheaper prices are available via ebay and Hong Kong if you are brave enough to order from such suppliers. There are some good deals as well with the Sony 16-50 2.8 lens - a very, very nice lens by the way and well worth buying with an a77 if you get a good bundle deal. I recommend wholeheartedly the Sigma 10-20 (the earlier variable aperture version), or the Tokina 11-16, for wide angle needs, and check out the excellent low cost Sony 35 1.8 SAM and 85 2.8 SAM lenses. If money is no object then go for the Sony G pro lenses and Sony Carl Zeiss lenses - superb !

In conclusion - a superb, high performance SLT offering excellent results, especially when paired with good glass. Still a good performer in late 2013, though it has been bettered by Sony's flagship a99 full frame SLT model and anyone buying should be aware it may well be replaced in mid to late 2014 by a new model.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I am agreat fan of Sony products., 16 Jun 2013
By 
Mr. W. Jenner "Ruikki" (Leicester, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: Sony SLTA77V.CEH Translucent Mirror Interchangeable Lens Camera (24.3MP) 3.0 inch LCD (Electronics)
This is my second Alfa77, the original one I still own, so, I have 2 of them, for different applications . I am a semi-professional photographer and these cameras suit me down to the ground.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great camera, 9 July 2012
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My first photos on this camera were portraits taken with a flash indoors at home in the evening, as the weather had been wet and cloudy all day. I was stunned by the detail in the facial features like hair, eyelashes and cracks on the lips etc. The colours were a little purply, but I adjusted them more to my taste in Lightroom. Next day on a fishing trip I took a couple of outdoor shots in bright sunshine and the colours were very accurate using the daylight white balance setting. Like all EVFs I've used they don't work brilliantly in extremes of lighting, but they are good enough to frame a photo with. I'm using it on ISO 50 for the time being to compensate for the challenges faced by the highly populated sensor.

Given favourable conditions I think this camera is capable of producing amazing photos. And I look forward to doing just that with it for some years to come.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Wonderfull Piece of Kit, 4 Feb 2013
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This review is from: Sony SLTA77V.CEH Translucent Mirror Interchangeable Lens Camera (24.3MP) 3.0 inch LCD (Electronics)
The Sony SLTA77V is a very impressive camera. The focussing speed is incredible and the electonic viewfinder makes getting your shots just right a very simple task. The look and feel of the camera are of a good quality and despuite the initial outlay, I feel it will represent good value for money in the long run. It is still very early days, but I am very impressed with the camera.
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15 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome camera, 2 July 2012
By 
So I recently purchased an A65 and returned it because there wasn't enough features to justify the price difference between the A57 & the A65. And the reason I originally purchased the A65 was because I didn't really think there was much in the A77 I would need.

I was wrong.

Only a few minutes after playing with the A77 the little things started to make me think "How did I live without that feature before!?!?" So for example, the ability to set a minimum & maximum ISO. This small feature has made my life much easier. More buttons to control things directly without fumbling through the menus.

The build quality is fantastic. It feels rock solid in your hand and the grip is very comfortable.

But let's be honest, this is a camera aimed at a semi-pro or serious enthusiast. If you are an amateur just looking for a good camera then the A57/A65 is probably good enough for you and save yourself some cash. But then if you are looking at this review for the body only then you are probably already one.

Noise performance was the biggest concern of mine after reading a lot of reviews. Yes it is noticeably noisier than the A55/A57 but I would argue that is because it is a 24MP sensor rather than 16MP. If you regularly take photos in low light then maybe look at the A57. For me I've found that anything below ISO 1600 is perfectly fine. ISO 3200 is the highest I will go. Noise is more noticeable on RAW files but nothing you cannot easily touch up in post-processing using Photoshop or Lightroom. I actually am surprised how little I am caring about noise. I honestly thought it would be a bigger issue than it is. And to put this into context I reckon we're talking about a marginal difference between say a D7000 and the A77 at the same ISO.

One thing I love about this camera is how quiet the shutter sound is. To be fair this is a feature of the electronic curtain first and is common across the latest SLT's. It's like having quiet mode of the Nikon's on all the time! It was utterly fantastic at a recent wedding I shot where it was nice & quiet and I wasn't feeling like I was interrupting the ceremony with the clacking of the shutter. Pair this with a SSM lens and it will be awesome.

Aside from the ISO noise issue, I honestly cannot think of any other negative. Perhaps the only other negative is that I worry if the price will drop once the full frame A88/A99 is released in a few months time. But then that's the same with any tech. If you wait for the next camera before buying you will never get one.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I like its size and controls, 10 April 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Sony SLTA77V.CEH Translucent Mirror Interchangeable Lens Camera (24.3MP) 3.0 inch LCD (Electronics)
I use long lenses most of the time. So the body size helps with handing, The controls are well placed for my. I now have two
SLTA77V
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Camera ever, 21 Aug 2012
By 
B. Hubbard "brijanhub" (Orpington, Kent) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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Was a Minolta fan and had their cameras so when they stopped making them and transferred their expertise and technical spec to Sony went for them have had 3 Sonys the a100, a350, a55 and now the a77 and am so pleased with it. Heavier than the a55 but that is to the good as it feels like a real camera. Already had 2 x sony lenses so kept to Sony and am still very impressed. I cannot believe the sharpness of photos taken through my 18-250 lens and when viewed on my Mac and zooming in, the detail that is revealed is phenomenal.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly good, 18 April 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Sony SLTA77V.CEH Translucent Mirror Interchangeable Lens Camera (24.3MP) 3.0 inch LCD (Electronics)
A bought the Sony A77 as a very high resolution camera for use
with long focus lens (Sigma 50-500) and it works extremely
well in this combination. The semi-transparent mirror and
electronic viewfinder are not quite as 'uninterrupted'
during multi-frame shooting as I'd hoped, but still better
than a Canon SLR 4 times the price. Autofocus is very accurate.
Continuous shooting at 4fps drops to about 1 fps after the
first 12 which I find a bit limiting. Battery life limited
but the camera is light until you add the 500mm lens!
Buy a spare battery to carry with you.
Pleased with my purchase.
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