Sony Alpha SLT-A58: UK price and launch date confirmed (update)

February 20, 2013

Set to replace the SLT-A57, the SLT-A58 features a 20.1-million-pixel APS HD imaging sensor and an OLED Tru-Finder electronic viewfinder (EVF), to help convey more colour and contrast in viewed images. The EVF has a resolution of 1.44 million dots.

Due out in mid-April, priced around £450 (body only), the A58 also sports a 2.7in (460,000-dot resolution), tilting, LCD monitor.

Also on board is a Bionz image processing engine, borrowed from the full-frame A99 to help improve image quality in low light.

The news comes as Sony UK product manager for SLT and NEX, Joe Asai, tells Amateur Photographer (AP) that – amid a booming CSC market – Sony wants its Alpha cameras to cater for users seeking the more secure, DSLR-like handling, rugged feel and grip offered by an SLT model.

The camera’s maximum burst rate is five frames per second (or 8fps in Continuous Advance Priority AE mode), according to Sony. Armoury also includes 15 picture effects and a 15-point AF system.

To help accurately track moving subjects, the 492g newcomer incorporates Auto-Object Framing and Lock-on Autofocus.

In a presentation, Sony explained that the A58 can establish ‘continuous detection of subject size’ to enable ‘optimal AF point alignment with the target frame’.

Sony tells AP that it will discontinue its A37 model around Easter time and that production of the 16MP Alpha 57 will likely cease soon after.

Sony has also unveiled three new A-mount lenses, including a redesigned 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6.

The new SAM [Smooth Autofocus Motor] II version boasts a rear element to combat ghosting and flare. It is priced around £180 and due in April.

Expected out in May is a Carl Zeiss Planar T* 50mm f/1.4 ZA SSM, priced around £1,300, which incorporates an 8-element-in-5-groups build and two aspherical elements.

And, due in UK shops in early March, is a revamped 70-400mm f/4-5.6G telephoto, a £1,800 lens with an AF billed as four times faster than its predecessor. It also features a new anti-reflective coating.