Al­pha A6000

What do you get if you cross the Sony A7R with the NEX-6?

Mac Format - - RATED | KIT - £549 (body only) Man­u­fac­turer Sony, Screen 3-inch, 912k-dot tilt­ing LCD Res­o­lu­tion 24.3 megapixel Video 1080p Weight 344g Di­men­sions 120x66.9x45.1mm Wi-Fi, and a good bat­tery Cus­tomis­able con­trols LCD touch­screen is tiltable… … but it’s not t

Sony is pro­duc­ing some of the most in­ter­est­ing com­pact sys­tem cam­eras on the mar­ket. Small and sleek, the A6000 has a sim­i­lar feel to the Sony A7, fea­tur­ing a newly de­signed 24.3 mil­lion-pixel APS-C CMOS sen­sor and an im­age sen­sor with 179 phase-de­tec­tion aut­o­fo­cus points. At launch, Sony claimed that the cam­era had the fastest AF in the world among cam­eras with an APS-C sized sen­sor. Although it’s not a touch­screen, a tiltable LCD screen sits on the back, which is use­ful for shoot­ing from awk­ward an­gles.

(Set­ting the aut­o­fo­cus point on this cam­era would be some­what speed­ier with a touch­screen, but it’s not too bad if you set the right cus­tom but­tons.)

There are plenty of cus­tomis­able con­trols avail­able. There are di­als for con­trol­ling the shoot­ing mode (such as au­to­matic, semi-au­to­matic or man­ual), and another for al­ter­ing the shut­ter speed or aper­ture.

Re­flect­ing the broader trend, the A6000 comes with built-in Wi-Fi and NFC. It’s cus­tomis­able with apps that you can down­load from Sony’s cloud-based photo stor­age ser­vice PlayMe­mories (­ucts /playme­mories). Set­ting up Wi-Fi is quick and easy, and makes the A6000 con­ve­nient for quickly shar­ing pho­tos to your iOS de­vice.

The A6000’s grip is pro­nounced and easy to hold. It can be bun­dled with a 16-50mm f/3.5-5.6 power zoom; this kit lens is a good all­rounder to get started with, but there are plenty of ad­di­tional lenses. You can also buy it as body-only.

De­tail is ren­dered very well by the A6000. Gen­er­ally, im­age smooth­ing only starts to be­come prob­lem­atic for nor­mal print­ing sizes in shots taken at around ISO 3,200 up­wards. In good light, aut­o­fo­cussing speeds are very quick, drop­ping as the light lev­els drop, but only strug­gling to lock on at all in very dark con­di­tions.

Fi­nally, bat­tery life is bet­ter than its pre­de­ces­sors – due to the smaller sen­sor – but it’s still worth buy­ing a spare bat­tery. Amy Davies

Within touch­ing dis­tance of the per­fect CSC. Fan­tas­tic im­age qual­ity and cus­tomis­i­ble but­tons.

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