Sony a68 Brief Review



  • 24.2 megapixel APS-C sensor
  • Translucent mirror SLT camera
  • BIONZ X processor
  • A-mount lenses
  • ISO 100 – 12800
  • Shutter speed 30 sec. To 1/4000, bulb
  • Flash sync speed 1/160
  • 79 autofocus points
  • 5 fps burst shooting (8 fps with crop mode)
  • 2.7” tilting LCD
  • Electronic viewfinder
  • Manual modes
  • RAW
  • 1080p HD video at 30 fps
  • Li-ion battery
  • Weighs 1.48 lbs. (675g)
  • Release Date: 2016-05-19
  • Final Grade: 90 4.5 Star Rating: Recommended

Sony a68 offers big autofocus performance with a little price tag
The Sony a68's biggest feature is the big 79-point autofocus system, but be aware of a few ways that the camera differs from other entry-level DSLRs.
By Hillary Grigonis, Last updated on: 5/8/2016

Just when we thought Sony had forgotten about their DSLRs to concentrate on mirrorless, they've released a very intriguing entry-level model, the a68. While other budget DSLRs offer autofocus points in the single digits or very low double digits, the Sony a68 offers 79.

First, the a68 isn't technically a DSLR. It's a SLT, which means that the mirror inside is translucent, it doesn't flip up and down. While part of that technology is what allows the a68 to be so affordably priced for the feature set, that also means it has an electronic viewfinder, not an optical one.

The sensor technology inside the a68 isn't new, but offers a solid 24.2 megapixels. Like Canon's DSLRs, it still includes the optical low pass filter, while most new Nikons have eliminated the filter trading the risk of moire for enhanced detail. But, the processor is new over the older Sony a58, which should result in better noise reduction at high ISOs as well as that enhanced autofocus.

While the Sony a68 advertises 8 fps, that's just in a crop mode. The true burst rate is 5 fps, which is right in line with the competing Nikon D5500 and Canon T6i. But what's going to be the biggest edge speed-wise is the upgraded autofocus system. The extra points makes for better tracking using continuous focus, so the a68 has a bit of a leg up for sports over other budget DSLRs. While initially the specs looked to improve on the flash sync speed, the current spec sheet lists that as a slower 1/160 (most hit 1/250).

The design has a few noteworthy features as well. The LCD screen tilts, though it is a bit smaller than other DSLRs as just a 2.7". The top of the camera includes a secondary screen, which you normally don't find until the higher-priced enthusiast models like the $1,200 D7200. Wi-fi is missing, however.

The Sony a68 offers an excellent autofocus system for an affordable price. As an SLT, it has an electronic viewfinder instead of an optical one. It's also a bit heavier than both the comparable Nikon D5500 and Canon T6i. The D5500 eliminates the optical low pass filter for enhanced detail (though suffers from more moire), has a better 60 fps frame rate for video, has a larger 3.2" touchscreen and offers wi-fi. The Canon T6i also has a touchscreen and wi-fi. But, with the enhanced autofocus system, the Sony a68 certainly will find a happy home in the hands of many consumers.

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Sony Reviews

Sony has been at the forefront of the market for consumer electronics for the past 30 years by offering innovative imaging products in response to changes in the market. Sony has made cameras that are ideal for casual users, hobbyists, and professional photographers through their dedication to implementing the most current technology with a sleek and minimal style, resulting in an end result of the highest quality.

Sony was the first to put a full-frame sensor inside of a mirrorless camera, the A7 and A7R, and a little later, the A7S. While the first-of-its-kind cameras aren't without flaws, Sony executed their ideas fairly well and made some pretty solid cameras to start the new line.

Speaking of first-of-its kind, Sony also designed a “camera-without-a-camera,” the QX10 and QX100. These cameras have a sensor and lens, but no operating system—instead, consumers use their smartphone via wi-fi or NFC to operate the camera. While the cameras certainly have flaws (mainly in the slow response due to operating through wi-fi), we still have to applaud Sony for the way they've responded to the rise in smartphone photography (plus the cameras have actually sold remarkably well).

Sony has also been highly successful with the RX compact camera line that began with the RX100, a compact camera with a 1” sensor, excellent image quality and full manual modes. The camera has since seen some solid updates, and remains a good option. Sony also added the RX10, a camera with a 1” sensor but instead of focusing on compact size, adds a much bigger zoom.

While their focus is on more advanced models, it’s usually a pretty safe bet to pick up a Sony compact, even a budget priced one, and still get a lot of bang for your buck. We're also big fans of Sony's designs, making their cameras easy to use and adjust, like the HX400 that has an automatic sensor on the electronic viewfinder as well as a control ring around the lens.

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