Sony Alpha a450 review
The a450's body design is the same as the other mid-level Alphas, bar the rear LCD which is fixed to the rear, meaning a solid and sizeable grip is on offer and the camera feels good in the hand. However the exterior doesn't feel entirely polished and is somewhat ‘plasticy', though not flimsy. Saying that the overall layout is welcome when compared to the lower-end Alpha models with their sunken-grips that make for less-comfortable extended periods of use.
A variety of one-touch buttons around the a450's body provide ease of control. Most functions are quick-accessed using the Fn button on the camera's rear, avoiding any excessive menu-digging among the myriad of options in the full menu. One-touch D-range (Dynamic Range Optimiser), Drive mode and ISO buttons each sit just behind the shutter release atop of the camera. A further exposure lock and exposure compensation control buttons feature on the cameras rear, accompanied by the usual d-pad layout for general control and playback. Interfaces are displayed in an easy-to-understand format that's designed to visually inform about exposure, presenting the shutter value change when adjusting aperture for example. This visual prompting is great for new users getting to grips with manual controls but, and importantly, doesn't slow down a more advanced user's use in any way.
The provided 18-55mm kit lens has a set-forward front focusing ring that makes accidental touching of the front element common when manually focusing - a focus ring further set back in the lens would have made for better use.