Sony A390

Last Updated (28 July’12):
– Review by Ephotozine

Sony A390 is a 14.2 MP Digital SLR Camera features Quick AF Live View, 2.5 fps, BIONZ processor, 6.9cm (2.7″) tilt-angle screen, Responsive autofocus, Built-in Image Stabilizer, ISO 100-3200, and 2.7″ tilting TFT LCD. The camera measures 128.1 x 97.1 x 83.5mm (W/H/D, excluding protrusions) and weighs 497g (without battery, memory card, accessories).

Overall Rating: ★★★½☆ | Latest Price Info

Expert Reviews

Sony A390 Reviews

Ephotozine reviews the Sony A390 and writes;
“Sony’s A390 is certainly a very capable camera and the results this camera is capable of producing should please many who want an easy to use introduction to shooting with a digital SLR. It’s only weakness appears to be with noise at high ISO settings, but even then the results are more than acceptable for most uses up to ISO800 and even maybe ISO1600.”
Rating: ★★★½☆

Techradar reviews the Sony A390 and writes;
“The image quality is good, but there’s no sign that the A390’s 14-megapixel sensor resolves significantly more detail than a 12-megapixel APS-C sensor. At a pixel level, detail is slightly unsharp, and doesn’t improve noticeably if you shoot RAW and process images in Sony’s own Image Data Converter or Adobe Camera Raw. Images sharpen up pretty well in software, but there would still be little point in choosing the A390 on the basis of megapixels alone.”
Rating: ★★★☆☆

Goodgearguide reviews the Sony A390 and writes;
“The 55-200mm lens gives the A390 good reach for close-ups and it’s useful for outdoor photography as well as portraits. It has an aperture range from f/4 (at 55mm) to f/5.6 (at 200mm), but it’s not stabilised — image stabilisation happens in the A390’s body. It focuses rather loudly, but it’s accurate and in our tests we had no problems focusing on our intended marks.”
Rating: ★★★½☆

WDC reviews the Sony A390 and writes;
“All in all, although the build quality is a little ‘plasticy’, the A390 has a lot to offer and for a fair price. The camera’s Quick AF Live View speed still remains to be beaten in this class, and the tilt-angle LCD screen is a great addition when compared to some competition. The A390 stands its ground well and produces decent pictures throughout its ISO 100-3200 range.”
Rating: ★★★★½

PCAdvisor reviews the Sony A390 and writes;
“Sony’s DLSR-A390 is capable of capturing vibrant and clear images, but its body could use some work. For starters, we’d like a dedicated button for the flash and for zooming in on photos in playback mode, and it’s awkward to change the aperture in manual mode. The camera also lacks video mode. If you don’t care about video and just want a good quality D-SLR, then the DSLR-A390 is worth considering, but it will take time to used to it. “
Rating: ★★★½☆

CNET reviews the Sony A390 and writes;
“The A390 delivers vivid, saturated colours and good exposure accuracy in all sorts of lighting, whereas previous beginner-orientated Sony dSLRs have had a tendency to overexpose, particularly when it comes to backlit shots.”
Rating: ★★★☆☆

Pocket-lint reviews the Sony A390 and writes;
“Although images aren’t always uber-sharp with the basic kit lens, they are still of good quality and the variety of additional lenses available offer wide variety for picture taking.”
Rating: ★★★½☆

PhotographyBlog reviews the Sony A390 and writes;
“The Sony A390 handled chromatic aberrations very well during the review, with limited purple fringing mainly present around the edges of objects in high-contrast situations..”
Rating: ★★★½☆

User Opinions

Sony A390 User Reviews

Beats Canon and Nikon Basic SLRs
“The tilting live screen is also very handy when taking photos over a crowd or down low and not wanting to get down on your knees to take it. Just remember to purchase a higher speed memory card with the camera. Excellent photo quality – definitely worth the money!” – By J. Lah
Rating: ★★★★★

Impressive image quality and ease of use
“I love the fact that the image stabilization is built into the body and not the lens. The Live View mode makes teaching with this so easy, as well as for a student to understand. The color quality from this Sony beats my old Nikon hands down. For the price, this is an AWESOME camera, and super easy to use, whether it be on auto or manual.” – By careswartz
Rating: ★★★★★

Great camera
“I already had a couple of lenses from my old Minolta SLR, but I was willing to check at all options, but after my testing these cameras in the store, the Sony was easier to use, did the focusing much better than all the others, that the choice was easy.” – By imfallen_angel
Rating: ★★★★★

Love this camera – great intro camera for the learner
“that is my favorite part since I had taken my girl to a photo studio which charged $400 for an hour session. I can honestly say that the camera is worth a thousand times its price since I can catch these wonderful moments without having to pay through the nose for studio quality photos.” – By Phong Phan
Rating: ★★★★★

Excellent camera
“I LOVE it! It’s so easy to use and has some great features for a beginner DSLR user like me. I mainly use it for typical “mom photography,” but I’m starting to branch out and have even begun researching lenses. I’m extremely pleased with the quality of my photos and would definitely reccomend this camera, especially for the price!” – By W. Zopf
Rating: ★★★★★

Excellent Camera for Beginner
“I have never been a great photographer but I think that this camera has certainly made it much easier to take good pictures. Though the price is high, it is worth it.” – By SamD4
Rating: ★★★★★

Awesome DSLR
“This is truly an awesome camera. It is capable of taking so many great pictures. The standard lens it comes with (18-55mm lens) is good, but with the right lens/flash for the situation you’re photographing, the Sony A390 gets the job done.” – By Tommy J. Roxas Jr.
Rating: ★★★★★

Great starter DSLR for the money
“Bought this as our first DSLR after several point and shoots. Quality is great and it is simple to use, weight is good, and battery life is long. Also works perfectly with the old Minolta Alpha lenses.” – By Randeau
Rating: ★★★★★

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Sony A390 Sample Photos

Sony A390 Sample Photos @
Sony A390 Sample Photos @


Sony A390 User Manual (PDF)

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– Download Sony A390 User Manual (PDF – 6.4MB)


Sony A390 Features

Catch life from any angle with the Sony α390 digital SLR camera featuring Live View, which lets you compose shots via a tiltable 2.7″ LCD screen. The α390 DSLR camera also combines ease-of-use with powerful features including 14.2-megapixel resolution for superb image clarity and exceptionally quick AF response to capture the perfect moment. Plus, SteadyShot INSIDE™ in-camera image stabilization reduces blur while the on-screen Help Guide and Graphic Display help take the complexity out of DSLR photography. The α390L comes with an 18-55mm standard zoom lens.

2.7” (diag.) Clear Photo LCD Plus™ featuring Live View with Quick Auto Focus
A large 2.7” (diag.) Clear Photo LCD Plus™ display features Live View with Quick Auto Focus, which lets you compose and shoot pictures in real-time using the LCD, just as you would with a point-and-shoot camera. In addition, the LCD display tilts up or down for low or high-angle shooting situations, such as capturing a child’s first steps or shooting over a crowd.

Lightweight and stylish body
The DSLR-A390 features a stylish, modern design with an intuitive button layout for easier operation. In addition, the lightweight body and revised grip make the camera more comfortable to hold and carry.

High sensitivity (ISO 3200) for superior noise reduction
A broad sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 3200 enables you to capture beautiful color images even in very dim light — with High ISO Noise Reduction technology that reduces picture noise artifacts at high-sensitivity ISO 1600 and ISO 3200 settings by eliminating noise from RAW data after analog-to-digital conversion.

Up to 2.5 fps continuous shooting
Continuous Shooting lets you shoot at up to 2.5 fps (frames per second) while viewing your subject through the optical viewfinder so you never lose track of the action.

Built-in Pop-Up Flash
The Auto Pop-Up Flash automatically pops up and fires as needed when the camera is set to certain scene selection modes, helping first-time DSLR photographers shoot more effectively. In addition, the α380features an integrated hot shoe, which lets you expand your lighting options with a range of accessory flashes (sold separately).

Smart Teleconverter 2X Digital Zoom
Smart Teleconverter 2X Digital Zoom lets you zoom in electronically on your subject and reproduces pixels on a 1:1 basis so there’s no degradation in picture quality. One touch zooms in at 1.4X, while the second touch advances to 2X zoom — creating the 35mm equivalent of a telephoto effect with the camera’s standard 18-55mm optical zoom lens.

Scene Selection Modes
Scene Selection Modes optimize camera settings for different shooting situations. Just turn the Mode Dial to select from Portrait, Landscape, Macro, Sports, Sunset, and Night View modes.

Dual slot Compatiblity for Memory Stick® and SD media
Compatible with high-capacity Memory Stick PRO Duo™, Memory Stick PRO-HG Duo™ and SD/SDHC media (sold separately) for convenient storage and sharing of your images.

SteadyShot INSIDE™ in-camera image stabilization
SteadyShot INSIDE™ in-camera image stabilization is built into each camera body, so every a-mount lens benefits from the ability to minimize blur due to camera shake.

Integrated on-screen Help Guide and Graphic Display
An integrated on-screen Help Guide and Graphic Display help take the complexity out of DSLR photography. The Help Guide offers clear, concise explanations of various modes and settings, while the Graphic Display helps you understand the relationship between aperture and shutter speed, as well as the effect each has on photographic results.

Eye-Start Autofocus
Eye-Start Autofocus System begins precision autofocus adjustments the moment you raise the camera to your eye, so the camera is ready to catch the perfect moment.

Creative Style settings
Creative Style settings give you control over how the camera processes your images. Choose from 8 finishing styles, including Standard, Vivid, Potrait, Landscape, Night View, Sunset, B&W, and Adobe RGB, and fine tune them to your personal taste with the ability to adjust contrast, saturation, and sharpness settings..

Anti-Dust Technology
Anti-Dust Technology helps keep the CCD imager clean, resulting in consistently better pictures, by utilizing a static-free anti-dust coating on the CCD filter, as well as an anti-dust vibration that automatically shakes the CCD to help dislodge dust each time the camera is shut off.

BIONZ™ image processor
The advanced BIONZ™ image processor uses hardware-based Large Scale Integrated (LSI) circuitry to enhance images with rich tonal reproduction, reduced noise, and improved white balance and exposure control, for clear, sharp photos even at high sensitivity settings.

Index and Slide Show Display
Index and Slide Show Display enable you to quickly review your photos using 4, 9 or 25-frame index views, or as an automatic slide show with fade-in/fade-out effect.

14.2 megapixel resolution for ultra-fine detaill
A 14.2 megapixel APS-size CCD image sensor captures your images in spectacular, high-resolution detail, giving you the freedom to make large prints and tight crops without sacrificing quality.

HDMI™ terminal and BRAVIA® Sync™ compatibility
An HDMI™ terminal gives you the option of connecting your camera to a compatible HDTV and playing back your images in stunning high definition quality(HDMI cable required, sold separately). In addition, BRAVIA® Sync™ works with compatible Sony® BRAVIA HDTVs to let you control camera playback using the television’s remote (HDMI cable and BRAVIA Sync capable HDTV required, sold separately)1.

9-Point AF Sensor
9-Point Center Cross AF Sensor with improved focus control to help bring images into sharp definition more quickly, and predictive focus control automatically calculates the position of fast-moving subjects.

Dynamic Range Optimizer
Dynamic Range Optimizer provides two levels – Standard/Plus to improve results with backlit subjects and recover details hidden in shadows or lost in glare. Normal DRO improves detail using standard gamma curves for fast shot-to-shot response time, while Advanced DRO adjusts dynamic range area-by-area for greater accuracy..

Stamina® Battery power
Stamina® Battery power allows you to take up to 500 shots2 on a fully charged NP-FM50 InfoLITHIUM® battery when using the optical viewfinder mode, and you’ll be able to see how much power remains in percentage increments, so you can keep shooting in confidence.

PhotoTV HD compatibility
PhotoTV HD compatibility3 lets you automatically create high-resolution thumbnails optimized for viewing on a compatible Sony® BRAVIA® HDTV.

Function Guide Display
Function Guide Display provides intuitive and easy to use on-screen menus that can be activated and operated with one hand using the Fn (Function) button and controller button to adjust Flash mode, Autofocus mode, White Balance, Metering mode, AF area and D-Range Optimizer.


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