Sony Alpha A230

Last updated (04 February’12):
– Review by PCAuthority

Sony Alpha A230 is a DSLR camera features 10.2-megapixel APS-size CCD image sensor, SAL1855 18-55mm standard zoom lens, SteadyShot INSIDE in-camera image stabilization, Eye-Start Autofocus, HDMI terminal with BRAVIA Sync compatibility, ISO 100 to ISO 3200, 9-Point AF Sensor, Up to 2.5 fps continuous shooting and a 2.7-inch (diag.) Clear Photo LCD Plus display. The camera is the smallest, lightest a-series body (July 2009) with dimensions of 5.0 x 3.8 x 2.7 (128 x 97 x 67.5 mm W/H/D, excluding protrusions) and Weight (Approx.) – 15.9 oz. (452 g without battery, memory card, accessories).

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

Expert Reviews

Sony Alpha A230 Reviews

PCAuthority reviews the Sony Alpha A230 and writes;
” There’s no arguing with the A230’s value, but the race at the budget end of the DSLR market is incredibly tight, and at this price the A230 is a little short of the mark.”
Rating: ★★★★☆

Macworld reviews the Sony Alpha A230 and writes;
” If you’re on a budget, the A230 is one of the most affordable SLR kits around. The A230 may be less sophisticated than other models, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing given its target market. It’s a good starter option for those on a budget who aren’t already wedded to another camera’s lens system.”
Rating: ★★★☆☆ reviews the Sony Alpha A230 and writes;
” The kit lens is also impressively sharp given ideal shooting conditions, displaying minimal barrel distortion and corner softening at maximum wide angle.”
Rating: ★★★☆☆

Pocket-Lint reviews the Sony Alpha A230 and writes;
“The good: Good, sharp results using 18-55mm standard zoom, user friendly, realistic colours, small form factor, large-ish LCD. The bad: Plastic feel, blocky design, no Live View, grip too small to hold as comfortably or tightly as we’d have liked: Verdict: Sony’s Alpha A230 is a respectable entry in the starter DSLR canon, easy to use and capable of delivering good results with the minimum of fuss and user input “
Rating: ★★★½☆

CameraLabs reviews the Sony Alpha A230 and writes;
“the bottom line is the A230 is simply one of the cheapest DSLRs on the market right now. Sure it doesn’t have Live View, movies or a big screen, but it does have 10 Megapixels, a friendly user interface and built-in stabilisation – not at all bad for the money.”

Rating: ★★★★☆ reviews the Sony Alpha A230 and writes;
“Verdict: The Sony Alpha A230 offers lots of features not usually found on cheaper cameras, and gave good results. Good points: Light and portable; large, responsive buttons; on-screen help; crisp, clear result: Bad points Camera grip too small”
Rating: ★★★★☆ reviews the Sony Alpha A230 and writes;
“Overall response times were mostly good for an entry-level model and autofocusing in bright light was fast and accurate. However AF speeds slowed noticeably as light levels decreased and both lenses showed a tendency to hunt in near darkness..”
Rating: ★★★★☆ reviews the Sony Alpha A230 and writes;
“Overall I found the A230 design visually attractive and solidly built. It is relatively simple to use, handles well, the auto-focus responded accurately and quickly and the image quality was exceptionally good; better than I would have expected from an entry level camera”
Rating: N/A

TrustedReviews reviews the Sony Alpha A230 and writes;
“Sony Alpha A230 is currently the cheapest APS-C digital SLR on the market. It is very basic, and naturally it lacks many of the in bells and whistles such as HD video and live view found on more expensive models, but nonetheless it is a nice easy-to-use camera that is more than capable of taking excellent pictures.”
Rating: ★★★★☆

PhotoraphyBlog reviews the Sony Alpha A230 and writes;
” Noise is not a real problem up to ISO 800, though it does become rather noticeable at ISO 1600 in the form of blotchy chroma noise that the in-camera noise reduction cannot remove well. Loss of overall saturation is not a problem though, even at the highest setting of ISO 3200. “
Rating: ★★★½☆

PCmag reviews the Sony Alpha A230 and writes;
” At an indoor family get-together, I was able to shoot at ISO 1600 and produce solid shots with no noticeable noise. Outdoors I mostly shot at ISO 100-400, and images were clean and clear—not as sharp as those shot with the Canon Rebel EOS XSi, but the A230 did produce good-looking images. “
Rating: ★★★½☆

CNET reviews the Sony Alpha A230 and writes;
The good: fast autofocus; high magnification viewfinder for its class; dual card slots; relatively simple, straightforward operation; built-in wireless flash and image stabilization; helpful SteadyShot indicator. The bad: Smallish grip; default settings produce suboptimal photos. The bottom line: The Sony Alpha DSLR-A230 is a solid entry-level dSLR that will surely have its fans, and it’s a better deal than its slightly higher-end sibling, the A330.”

Rating: ★★★½☆

ePhotozine reviews the Sony Alpha A230 and writes;
“Build quality is as good as you can expect from an entry level camera but it doesn’t ‘look’ anything less than the A380. It’s easy to fall into a trap of making it look like it’s made of cost saving materials but hurrah for Sony, they haven’t done with this..”
Rating: ★★★½☆

User Opinions

Sony Alpha A230 User Reviews

Excellent budget DSLR with access to an immense array of lenses
“This is basically a Konica Minolta camera, and (almost) the entire archive of Minolta lenses and flashes will fit. For under $100, I purchased some brilliant lenses (four in all) that would have cost me well over $500 had I chosen their Nikon alternatives. So on that score, it offers very good value for money as well.” – By I. J. J. Nieuwland
Rating: ★★★★★

Very clean images – high IQ
“One test of good IQ is to enlarge the image (which I had to do in order to select, print and frame the portion that I wanted). Every one of these photos can be enlarged until it turns to pixels, and you won’t see one bit of noise. Absolutely smooth. My own cameras (Canon, Pentax, Fujifilm) range from 12+ MP to 16+MP and I honestly can’t say that they produce better results.” – By DrSurf
Rating: ★★★★☆

Best value out there: switched from Nikon D90
“This camera is perfect for someone with a little bit of photography background, and for someone with no idea of how to take a decent shot. It is easy, and can be fully automatic for settings, but can also allow more creativity with shutter speed, ISO, etc. Great results with the macro and also with the quick action feature. Fabulous! ” – By Karen Shiebler
Rating: ★★★★★

Great Camera
“The portrait setting is great. I am used to shooting a 35mm SLR, so it doesn’t bother me that the LCD screen doesn’t display what you’re shooting. The only con for me is that you usually need still subjects, pictures will come out blurry when your subject is moving too fast, unless they are well lit. However, it helps that you can adjust the shutter and aperture manually.” – By Mo
Rating: ★★★★☆

a230: great camera
“The menus and UI (user interface) are very very nice however. Easy to use and navigate. I really like this camera, it is basic, but has advanced features too. Color is pretty good, but for the best results you should play with the settings. Another plus is you can use Minolta lenses too.” – By Alexander Patellis
Rating: ★★★★☆

Sony A230 – A Winner From Sony
“The thing that stands out to me as an improvement over the A200 is the auto white balance. It is very good and a definite plus for new DSLR users. I actually compared it indoors to my Nikon D5000 and the white balance of the A230 was noticeably better.” – By Chris Martin
Rating: ★★★★★

WOW, this is my first DSLR Camera, I love it
“I have to say I’m very happy so far with my choice, and this camera is my first DSLR Camera. The auto focus is fast and accurate. The shutter response is quick. The image quality is very good with lots of detail. The exposures have been very accurate with a minimal number of photos with blown highlights. The image stabilization kicks butt. The dynamic range optimization really does pull highlights out of the shade.” – By Patrick Nguyen
Rating: ★★★★★

Sony Alpha a230L DSLR
“Out of camera colors/picture quality is great. I love the colors and textures this camera produces. Again, this is a personal preference. Exposure compensation can easily be changed +/-2 as well as color saturation in the menu. I have enjoyed the black and white out of camera results also.” – By B. Weeks
Rating: ★★★★★

Roughly as good as can be expected | Rating: ★★★★☆
“…In many ways, this camera is an ideal camera for a serious hobbyist (I’m not going to go hyperbolic and say “professional,” because the limitations of this camera are the sort that wouldn’t be tolerated by a professional being pushed to the limits of digital photography. It isn’t that a professional shot can’t be taken on this camera, but that there are digital bodies that would make a professional’s life much easier than the a230 would)….” – Davis

More user opinions | Write your opinion


Sony Alpha A230 Sample Photos

Sony Alpha A230 @ CameraLabs
Sony Alpha A230 @ TrustedReviews
Sony Alpha A230 @ PhotographyBlog
– Sony Alpha A230 Sample Photos: 12 @ ePhotozine


Sony Alpha A230 User Manual (PDF)

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– Download Sony Alpha A230 User Manual (PDF – 6MB)


Sony Alpha A230 Specifications


* Camera Type : Sony α Digital SLR camera with built-in flash and inter-changeable lenses
* Color Filter System : RGB primary color filters
* Effective Picture Resolution : Approx. 10.2 megapixels
* Imaging Sensor : APS-C size CCD sensor (23.6×15.8mm)
* Lens Mount Type : Sony α lens, Minolta and Konica Minolta AF lens
* Pixel Gross : Approx. 10.8 megapixels
* Processor : BIONZ™ image processor
* Recording Media Type : Memory Stick PRO Duo™ media / , SD and SDHC memory card,
* Recording Mode : RAW, RAW+JPEG, Fine, Standard
* Still Actual 16:9 : L size: 3872×2176 (8.4M) M size: 2896×1632 (4.7M) S size: 1920×1088 (2.1M)
* Still Actual 3:2 : L size: 3872×2592 (10M) M size: 2896×1936 (5.6M) S size: 1920×1280 (2.5M)

LCD Display

* Brightness Control : Selectable in 5 steps
* Coverage : 100% (Playback)
* Type : 2.7” TFT Clear Photo LCD (230,400 pixels)


* Flash Compensation : ±2EV (in 0.3-stop increments)
* Flash Coverage : 18mm in focal-length of lens attached
* Flash Metering System : ADI flash (automatic change for Pre-flash TTL)
* Guide Number : 10 (in meters at ISO100)
* Modes : Auto, Fill-flash, Red-eye reduction, Rear sync, Slow sync, Hi-speed sync*., Wireless
* Recycling Time : Approx. 4 sec.
* Type : Auto Pop-up

Inputs and Outputs

* HD Output : HDMI
* Memory Card Slot : Dual memory card slot: Memory Stick PRO Duo™ media SD and SDHC memory card
* Tripod Mount : Yes, 1/4″-20
* USB Port(s) : USB2.0 Hi-speed (mass-storage, PTP)


* AF modes : Single-shot AF, Automatic AF, Continuous AF, (AF/MF selectable)
* Drive Mode : Single-shot, Continuous, Self-timer, Self-timer Continuous, Bracketing, Remote Commander
* Exposure Compensation : ±2EV (in 0.3 EV steps)
* Exposure settings : Auto, Auto Flash Off, Program Auto (P), Aperture priority (A), Shutter priority (S), Manual (M)
* Focus Area : Wide (Up to 3 active focus points glow), Spot, Local (9 local areas selectable)
* Focus Features : Predictive control, Focus lock, Eye-start AF, AF illuminator (Built-in flash, Range: approx. 1-5m)
* Focus Points : 9 points
* Focus Sensitivity : EV0 – 18 (ISO100)
* Focus System : TTL phase detection system
* ISO : Auto, 100 to 3200 (in 1 EV steps,Recommended Exposure Index)
* Metering : TTL metering w/ 40-segment honeycomb-pattern SPC
* Metering Modes : Multi-segment, Center-weighted, Spot
* Metering Sensitivity : EV1 – 20 at ISO100 with F1.4 lens, (EV3 – 20 in spot metering mode)
* White Balance : Auto, Daylight, Shade, Cloudy, Tungsten, Fluorescent, Flash, Custom

Weights and Measurements

* Dimensions (Approx.) : Approx. 128 x 97 x 67.5 mm (W/H/D, excluding protrusions)
* Weight (Approx.) : Approx.452 g (without battery, memory card, accessories)


* Anti-dust function : Charge protection coating on low pass filter and image-sensor shift mechanism
* BRAVIA® Sync™ : Yes, via HDMI with compatible BRAVIA HDTV
* Color Mode(s) : Display color (Black, White, Brown, Pink)
* Creative Style : Standard, Vivid, Portrait, Landscape, Night view, Sunset, B/W Contrast, Saturation, Sharpness
* Scene Mode(s) : Scene selection (Portrait, Landscape, Macro, Sports, Sunset, Night portrait/Night view)
* User Interface : “Easy-to-understand Graphic Display and on-screen Help Guide User-friendly function menu”


* Diopter Adjustment : -2.5 – +1.0m-1
* Eye relief : Approx. 16.5 mm from the eyepiece / 10.9 mm from the eyepiece frame at -1 diopter
* Field of View : 95%
* Focusing Screen : Spherical Acute Matte Screen
* Magnification : 0.83x (with 50mm lens at infinity)
* Type : Fixed eye-level, penta-Dach-mirror


* Battery Type : NP-FH50
* Number of Shots : Approx. 510 images with viewfinder, approx. 230 images in live view mode (CIPA standard)

One Response to “Sony Alpha A230”

  1. Ray says:

    oki, i have this camera, and it is really good, it takes someone time to get used to, but well worth it for the money, as good as some camera whcih cost 400+ but i agree that the grip is a little small, but surely if u are a keen photographer you arent going to be holding it with no strap

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