Does Sony's latest DSLR offer anything new over the previous A380 model? The What Digital Camera Sony A390 review investigates...

Product Overview

Overall rating:


Sony Alpha a390

Overall score:85%
Image Quality:85%


  • Live View, help guide, improved grip over previous design


  • No AF-assist lamp, small screen, no new technology over the previous a380 model


Sony Alpha a390 Review


Price as reviewed:



Sony a390 review – Verdict

Make no bones about it: the A390 is the previous A380 model wrapped up in a new – and, it must be said, better – body, with no other changes to speak of. It’s important to highlight this for any A380 users considering upgrading, though for brand new users bypassing the A380 will be of little consequence.

Sony a390 product image frontAll 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.

We’re very glad to see a more pronounced grip on the camera, which makes for better use than the A380 before it, though it’s perhaps a little disappointing to not see any other exciting new innovations in this new model.


DoF Prview:No
Built-in Flash:Yes, GN12
Max Flash Sync:1/160th
AF Points:9 points with cross sensor
White Balance Bracket:No
Colour Temp Control:2500 – 9900 Kelvin
Colour Space:sRGB, Adobe RGB
Exposure Comp:1/3EV Step ±2EV
Focusing Modes:Single shot AF, Automatic AF, Continuous AF, Manual Focus
Other:D-range Optimiser (+1-+5), Face Detection, Smile Shutter, 6 selectable Creative Styles
Built-in Image Stabilisation:Yes, sensor-based SteadyShot INSIDE
Dust Reduction:Yes, antistatic coating and sensor shift mechanism
Weight:Approx. 520g
Dimensions:137 x 104 x 81mm
Movie Mode:No
Power:Rechargeable li-ion battery
Live Mode:Yes, with Quick AF Live View autofocus
Connectivity:HDMI, USB 2.0
Memory Card:SD / Memory Stick Pro (not simultaneous use)
Field of View:95%
File Format:Raw, JPEG, RAW+JPEG
Shutter Speeds:30 – 1/4000th second, plus Bulb
Viewfinder Type:Fixed eye-level, penta-Dach-mirror
Exposure Modes:P, A, S, M, Night Portrait, Sunset, Sports Action, Macro, Landscape, Portrait, Flash Off, Auto
White Balance:Yes, 3 frames, selectable 2 steps
Drive Mode:Single, Continuous to 2.5fps, Self-timer, Continuous-advance AE bracketing
ISO:200-3200 (standard); (ISO 100 extended available)
Metering System:40-segment honeycomb-pattern SPC
Compression:Standard, Fine
Focal Length Mag:1.5x
Lens Mount:Sony A-mount (Konica Minolta lenses compatible)
LCD:2.7in 230K-dot tilt-angle
Output Size:4592 x 3056
Sensor:14.2MP CCD (1.5x crop)
  1. 1. Sony Alpha A390 review - Features
  2. 2. Design
  3. 3. Performance
  4. 4. Image Quality & Value
  5. 5. Verdict
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