While others are clinging on to DSLRs like it’s the last lifeboat on the ship, Sony has been making the transition to mirrorless full force. Last night, the company officially announced the follow-on to their NEX-6 camera, the Alpha 6000. The new camera keeps, for the most part, the form factor form of its predecessor. But it comes with a few new features for 2013. Let’s take a look, shall we?
The A6000 is a slim interchangeable lens camera with an APS-C sensor. The type gets its name from being the digital equivalent to 24mm Advanced Photo System Type-C film. The camera uses Sony’s E-mount lenses. It can use both the NEX-line’s E-lenses and the new full-frame 35mm lenses introduced with the Alpha 7-series. However the 35mm lenses will be cropped to 24mm size. The new camera gains the 24.3mp sensor from the NEX-7, up from 16.1mp in the NEX-6. It also includes the new BOINZ X processor. The camera can shoot 11 frames per second and Sony is claiming the world’s fastest autofocus at just 0.06 seconds. For night shooters, the ISO rating goes from 100 all the way up to 25600. This is all in a camera that, with the right lens, could conceivably fit in your pocket.
Shooting is through the left side electronic view finder or the 3.0″ LCD screen. It can tilt up, but there is no swivel for the screen. For ports, you get the same type-D Micro HDMI and MicroUSB 2.0 ports as the preceding model. Also like the NEX-6, it is missing a standard 3.5mm audio-in jack. While it does have a multi-use hot-shoe up top and it’s capable of 1080i at 60 frames, the lack of ports and the swivel screen could limit its video use. Like more recent Sonys, it makes use of Wi-Fi and NFC. Your smartphone can be used a digital remote through the free play Memories app. That just about sums it up for the feature set.
Pricing and Availability
The Alpha 6000 will be shipping in April. It keeps the latest pricing points of the NEX-6: $650 for the body only and $800 for the kit with 16-50mm zoom lens. That’s a good bit of savings over what that class of camera could have cost a year ago. The Alpha 6000 is available now for pre-order on Sony’s site.
Despite the name change, the A6000 looks to be pure NEX. If you were interested in the NEX-6 that came last year, the A6000 is a more evolved version. If you were looking for something a bit different, perhaps with an audio in, you’ll have to wait for the NEX-7′s replacement. Should it come.