Sony A380

Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 front

Sony A380 overview

Sony A380 is Sony's Entry-Level DSLR digital camera first released on August of 2009. It comes with a 14 MegaPixel, CCD APS-C size sensor with a maximum resolution of 4592 x 3056.

Sony introduced this model in order to improve the earlier Sony A350 (Read Full Comparison) and subsequently introduced the more recent Sony A390 (Read Full Comparison) in order to improve this camera.

The A380 is ranked #47 out of 80 in Entry-Level DSLR cameras and all around #383 out of 1465 for cameras in our database. Remember to test our Advanced camera finder to find camera ratings based on your personal requirements.

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Here is a graph of different criteria used in the scoring system.

Sony A380 history

The Sony A380 comes with a history of related cameras. Down below, you can take a look at all previous and more recent models as well as important specs.

ModelVisualizeResolutionSensor SizeMax fpsReleased
Sony-SLT-A68 front thumbnailSony A68
A380 vs A68
24MPAPS-C8.0 fps2015
Sony-SLT-A58 front thumbnailSony A58
A380 vs A58
20MPAPS-C8.0 fps2013
Photography Glossary
Sony-SLT-A57 front thumbnailSony A57
A380 vs A57
16MPAPS-C12.0 fps2012
Sony-SLT-A37 front thumbnailSony A37
A380 vs A37
16MPAPS-C6.0 fps2012
Sony-SLT-A65 front thumbnailSony A65
A380 vs A65
24MPAPS-C10.0 fps2011
Sony-SLT-A35 front thumbnailSony A35
A380 vs A35
16MPAPS-C6.0 fps2011
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Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A580 front thumbnailSony A580
A380 vs A580
16MPAPS-C7.0 fps2011
Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A560 front thumbnailSony A560
A380 vs A560
14MPAPS-C5.0 fps2010
Sony-SLT-A33 front thumbnailSony A33
A380 vs A33
14MPAPS-C7.0 fps2010
Sony-SLT-A55 front thumbnailSony A55
A380 vs A55
16MPAPS-C10.0 fps2010
Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A390 front thumbnailSony A390
A380 vs A390
14MPAPS-C3.0 fps2010
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Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A290 front thumbnailSony A290
A380 vs A290
14MPAPS-C3.0 fps2010
Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A450 front thumbnailSony A450
A380 vs A450
14MPAPS-C7.0 fps2010
Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A550 front thumbnailSony A550
A380 vs A550
14MPAPS-C7.0 fps2009
Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A500 front thumbnailSony A500
A380 vs A500
12MPAPS-C5.0 fps2009
Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A380 front thumbnailSony A38014MPAPS-C3.0 fps2009
Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A330 front thumbnailSony A330
A380 vs A330
10MPAPS-C3.0 fps2009
Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A230 front thumbnailSony A230
A380 vs A230
10MPAPS-C3.0 fps2009
Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A200 front thumbnailSony A200
A380 vs A200
10MPAPS-C3.0 fps2008
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Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A350 front thumbnailSony A350
A380 vs A350
14MPAPS-C3.0 fps2008
Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A300 front thumbnailSony A300
A380 vs A300
10MPAPS-C3.0 fps2008
Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A100 front thumbnailSony A100
A380 vs A100
10MPAPS-C3.0 fps2006

Sony A380 Pros and Cons

Here is a checklist of pluses and minuses of the Sony A380 based on things that are oftentimes viewed as essential in a digital camera.

flash built-in
has image stabilization (Sensor based)
includes face detect autofocus
includes HDMI port
saves RAW formats
screen tilts
sensor has phase detect autofocus
sensor resolution is decent (14 megapixels)
sensor size is nice (APS-C)
swap lenses (Sony/Minolta Alpha mount)
very good min ISO (100)
you can focus manually
can't record video
low battery (500 per charge)
low resolution screen (230 thousand dot)
max frames per second low (3.0 frames/s)
no headphone port
no microphone port
no Timelapse recording
screen is not selfie friendly
screen is somewhat small (2.7 inches)
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Sony A380 Sensor information

The Sony A380 is run by the Bionz processor chip. The measurement of the sensor in the Sony A380 is 23.6mm x 15.8mm (APS-C). The 373 mm² sensor is able to resolve 4592 x 3056 pixels using aspect ratios of 3:2 and 16:9. The camera includes Image Stabilization (Sensor based). Sensor stabilization is preferable than digital stabilization as the latter may cause cropping.

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The CCD sensor boasts 14 megapixels and gives a standard ISO range of 100 - 3200. RAW format is saved so the user has more room to maneuver in post.

The graphic below shows the A380's sensor size in comparison to other popular sizes. The A380 sensor comes with a crop factor of 1.5 and is displayed in green.

Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 sensor size Japan-exclusive Leica Leitz Phone 3 features big sensor and new modes

To get an idea of different aspect ratios, you should refer to the graphic below.

Camera sensor aspect ratios

Sony A380 dimensions

Sony A380 has a weight of 1.14 lbs (519g / 18.31 ounces) and features outer measurements of 128mm x 97mm x 71mm (5.0" x 3.8" x 2.8"). The weight of normal Entry-Level DSLR camera is 540g so the Sony A380 is on par in comparison with other rivals.

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Listed below is a pic of the Sony A380 beside a soda so you can have a sense of its size.

Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 dimensions scale

The top view below will provide the button arrangement on the A380.

Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 topview buttons dials

Sony A380 Lens information

The A380 uses the Sony/Minolta Alpha mount and has 145 lenses to choose from. Here is a small number of the lenses we have in our collection that will fit the A380.

ModelVisualizeFocal LengthApertureStabilizedWeight
Tamron-SP-AF-180mm-F3.5-Di-LD-IF-Macro-Sony-Alpha lensTamron SP AF 180mm F3.5 Di LD IF Macro180mmf/3.5 920g
Tamron-SP-AF-90mm-F2.8-Di-Macro-Sony-Alpha lensTamron SP AF 90mm F2.8 Di Macro90mmf/2.8 405g
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Tamron-SP-85mm-F1.8-Di-VC-USD--Sony-Alpha lensTamron SP 85mm F1.8 Di VC USD85mmf/1.8 700g
Tamron-SP-AF-60mm-F2-Di-II-LD-IF-Macro-Sony-Alpha lensTamron SP AF 60mm F2 Di II LD IF Macro60mmf/2.0 400g
Sigma-70mm-F2.8-EX-DG-Macro-Sony-Alpha lensSigma 70mm F2.8 EX DG Macro70mmf/2.8 527g
Tokina-AT-X-Pro-11-16mm-f2.8-DX-II-Sony-Alpha lensTokina AT-X Pro 11-16mm f2.8 DX II11-16mmf/2.8 560g
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Sony-DT-18-200mm-F3.5-6.3 lensSony DT 18-200mm F3.5-6.318-200mmf/3.5-6.3 405g
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Sony A380 Connectivity

The A380 has the following connectivity:

  • USB Yes
  • HDMI Yes

Cameras that feature NFC and / or Bluetooth support can be used wirelessly through smartphones. You will be able to copy files and sometimes alter settings without the hassle of connecting physically with the camera.

Certain apps also enable a Liveview and click the shutter whenever you aren't near the camera. If the camera contains a HDMI out, it can be hooked up to an external screen. Virtually all cameras will allow you to recharge the battery using the USB port.

Photography Glossary

Sony A380 Video information

Sony A380 does not record video. In case you are looking for a digital camera to shoot just images, it might not be a concern.

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Sony A380 Weather Sealing

There is no weather sealing on the Sony A380 so you have to be cautious in rainy or dusty situations.

Sony A380 Screen and Viewfinder

The Sony A380 comes with a 2.7 inch tilting screen having a resolution of 230 thousand dots.

Sadly the screen isn't a touch screen.

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The View Finder specs regarding Sony A380 are below:

  • ViewFinder Optical (pentamirror)
  • ViewFinder Coverage 95%
  • ViewFinder Magnification 0.49x

Viewfinders can be really helpful during bright outdoor situations which may make the camera screen washed out and hard to view.

Sony A380 Shutter information

Sony A380 is able to shoot continuously at 3.0 frames/s. The max shutter speed is 1/4000s.

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Sony A380 Flash and Hot shoe information

Sony A380 includes both inbuilt flash and external flash ability. The maximum flash sync speed is 1/160s.

Sony A380 Autofocus information

Sony A380 includes both Phase Detect AF and Contrast Based AF. Phase Detection focusing is more faster & precise as compared to Contrast Based focusing. The camera comes with Face detection making it handy for portraits.

The AF system comes with 9 focus points to select from. Sony A380 comes with manual focusing in case it is needed during low light scenarios or you need to have more accurate control on focusing.

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Sony A380 Battery life

The battery (NP-FH50) on the Sony A380 is built to last for 500 photos based on the CIPA benchmarks which is lesser in comparison with its competition. The general Entry-Level DSLR camera battery life is 589. Pentax K-x offers the highest possible (1900) battery life within this range of cameras.

Following is a list of Entry-Level DSLR cameras with the strongest battery life:

Sony A380 for different kinds of photography

The following graph shows a summation of the Sony A380 for different kinds of photography. To understand more, check out the specific section below.

Sony A380 as a Portrait photography camera

The Sony A380 receives a points total of 72 which is very good, and means the camera is a respectable option to use for portrait photography. Taking portrait photos leans greatly towards sensor size, support for RAW photos along with the ability to utilize off-camera flash.

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has manual focus
resolution is good (14MP)
sensor size is decent (APS-C)
includes face detection focusing
supports RAW files

Street photography with Sony A380

Having a exceptional score of 77, the Sony A380 is a awesome option for street photography. A decent street photography camera has a perfect balance of image quality plus portability.

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tilting screen
built in image stabilization (Sensor based)
sensor size is nice (APS-C)
supports RAW files

Sports photography with Sony A380

A modest sports photography points tally of 60 means the Sony A380 is fairly suitable for taking photos of sports. A camera really should have very good focusing plus continuous shooting for sports photography.

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has image stabilization (Sensor based)
good megapixels (14MP)
good sensor size (APS-C)
comes with phase detect auto focus
max fps very slow (3.0 frames/s)
low battery (500 shots)

Sony A380 Travel photography information

Size is very critical in selecting a camera for travel. On the whole, the Sony A380 gets a average 54 for a travelling camera which makes it somewhat suited to buy for your holidays.

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sensor resolution is decent (14 megapixels)
built-in flash
no Timelapse mode
not so great battery (500 shots)
screen isn't selfie friendly

Sony A380 Landscape photography details

If you're looking to pick a camera for landscape photography, the most vital aspect will no doubt be image quality. The Sony A380 with it's above average grade of 61 for a landscape camera is a respectable option in the current market.

Photography Glossary
has manual focus
interchangeable lenses (Sony/Minolta Alpha mount)
has image stabilization (Sensor based)
good MP (14MP)
sensor size is decent (APS-C)
supports RAW formats
tiny screen (2.7")
terrible battery pack (500 shots)
missing Time Lapse function

Sony A380 Vlogging details

A vlogging camera should really offer a articulating display, microphone input and ideally IBIS. Taking everything in to account, the Sony A380 is not very good for vlogging as it gets a awful score of 9.

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can't record video

Sony A380 Alternatives

If you need alternatives to the A380, below is a range of the highest ranked cameras that fall in to the class of Entry-Level DSLR.

The graph listed below gives you a bird's eye view of the A380 vs it's top ranking rivals mentioned previously.

These are some more cameras you may check out as alternate options. To review a complete comparison, just click on the "compare" link.

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General Information
Brand Name
Model type
Sony Alpha DSLR-A380
Entry-Level DSLR
Body design
Compact SLR
Sensor Information
Sensor type
Sensor size
Sensor measurements
23.6 x 15.8mm
Sensor area
Sensor resolution
14 megapixel
Anti alias filter
Aspect ratio
3:2 and 16:9
Highest resolution
4592 x 3056
RAW photos
Highest native ISO
Lowest native ISO
Focus manually
Touch focus
Continuous autofocus
Single autofocus
Autofocus tracking
Selective autofocus
Autofocus center weighted
Autofocus multi area
Autofocus live view
Face detection focus
Contract detection focus
Phase detection focus
Total focus points
Lens mount type
Sony/Minolta Alpha
Available lenses
Crop factor
Screen type
Screen diagonal
2.7 inches
Resolution of screen
230 thousand dot
Selfie friendly
Touch functionality
Viewfinder Information
Optical (pentamirror)
Viewfinder coverage
Viewfinder magnification
DXO scores
DXO All around rating
DXO Color Depth rating
DXO Dynamic range rating
DXO Low light rating
Slowest shutter speed
30 seconds
Maximum shutter speed
1/4000 seconds
Continuous shooting speed
3.0 frames/s
Shutter priority
Aperture priority
Expose Manually
Exposure compensation
Set white balance
Image stabilization
Inbuilt flash
Flash distance
10.00 m (at ISO 100)
Flash options
Auto, On, Off, Red-Eye, Slow Sync, Rear Curtain, Wireless
Hot shoe
AE bracketing
WB bracketing
Maximum flash sync
1/160 seconds
AF area
Center weighted
Video features
Highest video resolution
Microphone jack
Headphone jack
USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
Environment seal
Water proofing
Dust proofing
Shock proofing
Crush proofing
Freeze proofing
519g (1.14 pounds)
128 x 97 x 71mm (5.0" x 3.8" x 2.8")
Battery life
500 photographs
Battery form
Battery Pack
Battery ID
Self timer
Yes (2 or 10 sec)
Time lapse feature
Type of storage
SD/ SDHC, Memory Stick Pro Duo
Storage slots
Launch price