Sony A57

Sony SLT-A57 front
  • 16MP - APS-C Sensor
  • 3" Fully Articulated Screen
  • ISO 100 - 16000 (Push to 25600)
  • Sensor based Image Stabilization
  • 1920 x 1080 video
  • Sony/Minolta Alpha Mount
  • 618g - 132 x 98 x 81mm
  • Introduced September 2012
  • Old Model is Sony A55
  • New Model is Sony A58
  • Read full specs
  • Alternatives
  • Lenses
  • Size Comparison
  • FAQ

Sony A57 summary

Sony A57 is Sony's Entry-Level DSLR digital camera initially revealed on September of 2012. The camera includes a 16MP, CMOS APS-C sized sensor and has a full resolution of 4912 x 3264.

Sony released this model in an effort to replace the older Sony A55 (Read Full Comparison) and subsequently introduced the updated Sony A58 (Read Full Comparison) in order to update this model.

The A57 is scored #22 out of 80 in Entry-Level DSLR cameras and over-all #191 out of 1465 for digital cameras in our collection. Please test our Smart camera filter to find camera rankings based on your personalized criteria.

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Here is a diagram of various factors used in the rating system.

Sony A57 history

The Sony A57 is part of a family of products. You can see the complete range underneath.

ModelVisualizeResolutionSensor SizeMax fpsReleased
Sony-SLT-A68 front thumbnailSony A68
A57 vs A68
24MPAPS-C8.0 fps2015
Sony-SLT-A58 front thumbnailSony A58
A57 vs A58
20MPAPS-C8.0 fps2013
Samsung Releases Faster Versions of EVO MicroSD Cards
Sony-SLT-A57 front thumbnailSony A5716MPAPS-C12.0 fps2012
Sony-SLT-A37 front thumbnailSony A37
A57 vs A37
16MPAPS-C6.0 fps2012
Sony-SLT-A65 front thumbnailSony A65
A57 vs A65
24MPAPS-C10.0 fps2011
Sony-SLT-A35 front thumbnailSony A35
A57 vs A35
16MPAPS-C6.0 fps2011
Apple Innovates by Creating Next-Level Optical Stabilization for iPhone
Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A580 front thumbnailSony A580
A57 vs A580
16MPAPS-C7.0 fps2011
Sony-SLT-A33 front thumbnailSony A33
A57 vs A33
14MPAPS-C7.0 fps2010
Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A560 front thumbnailSony A560
A57 vs A560
14MPAPS-C5.0 fps2010
Sony-SLT-A55 front thumbnailSony A55
A57 vs A55
16MPAPS-C10.0 fps2010
Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A390 front thumbnailSony A390
A57 vs A390
14MPAPS-C3.0 fps2010
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Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A290 front thumbnailSony A290
A57 vs A290
14MPAPS-C3.0 fps2010
Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A450 front thumbnailSony A450
A57 vs A450
14MPAPS-C7.0 fps2010
Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A550 front thumbnailSony A550
A57 vs A550
14MPAPS-C7.0 fps2009
Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A500 front thumbnailSony A500
A57 vs A500
12MPAPS-C5.0 fps2009
Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A380 front thumbnailSony A380
A57 vs A380
14MPAPS-C3.0 fps2009
Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A330 front thumbnailSony A330
A57 vs A330
10MPAPS-C3.0 fps2009
Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A230 front thumbnailSony A230
A57 vs A230
10MPAPS-C3.0 fps2009
Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A200 front thumbnailSony A200
A57 vs A200
10MPAPS-C3.0 fps2008
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Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A350 front thumbnailSony A350
A57 vs A350
14MPAPS-C3.0 fps2008
Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A300 front thumbnailSony A300
A57 vs A300
10MPAPS-C3.0 fps2008
Sony-Alpha-DSLR-A100 front thumbnailSony A100
A57 vs A100
10MPAPS-C3.0 fps2006

Sony A57 Pros and Cons

Below is a list of benefits and drawbacks of the Sony A57 based on criterias which are often regarded as crucial in a digital camera.

above average minimum ISO (100)
built in image stabilization (Sensor based)
delivers RAW files
flash built-in
has manual focus
high res video (1920 x 1080 pxls)
includes external mic socket
includes HDMI socket
megapixel count decent (16 megapixels)
nice screen size (3 inch)
screen can move to multiple angles
screen has good resolution (921 thousand dots)
screen is selfie friendly
sensor has phase detect autofocus
sensor size is decent (APS-C)
supports face detection autofocus
supports tracking autofocus
swap lenses (Sony/Minolta Alpha mount)
no headphone socket
no Time Lapse recording
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Sony A57 Sensor info

The sensor measurement in the Sony A57 is 23.5mm x 15.6mm (APS-C). The 367 mm² sensor has the capability to capture 4912 x 3264 pixels and aspect ratios of 3:2 and 16:9. The camera includes Image Stabilization (Sensor based). In body stabilization is more desirable than digital stabilization as the latter may lead to cropping.

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The CMOS sensor boasts 16 megapixels and features a standard ISO range of 100 - 16000. This ISO can also be widened electronically to a high of 25600. RAW format is supported which means that you have wider room to maneuver in post.

The graphic underneath shows the A57's sensor dimensions in comparison to other popular sizes. The A57 sensor comes with a crop factor of 1.5 and is shown in green.

Sony SLT-A57 sensor size Snapchat Adds Watermarks to AI-Created Images

To get a sense of various aspect ratios, you should refer to the graphic below.

Camera sensor aspect ratios

Sony A57 dimensions

Sony A57 weighs 1.36 lb (618 grams / 21.80 ounces) and the volume of the camera is 132mm x 98mm x 81mm (5.2" x 3.9" x 3.2"). The weight of average Entry-Level DSLR camera is 540 grams so the Sony A57 is heavier in comparison with various rivals.

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Here is a picture of the Sony A57 with a softdrink so you're able to have a feel for its scale.

Sony SLT-A57 dimensions scale

The top view under will illustrate the button arrangement on the A57.

Sony SLT-A57 topview buttons dials

Sony A57 Lens info

The A57 works with the Sony/Minolta Alpha mount and has 145 lenses available to buy. Below is some of the lenses we have in our database which will work with the A57.

ModelVisualizeFocal LengthApertureStabilizedWeight
Sigma-18-200mm-F3.5-6.3-DC-Sony-Alpha lensSigma 18-200mm F3.5-6.3 DC18-200mmf/3.5-6.3 405g
Sony-DT-16-50mm-F2.8-SSM lensSony DT 16-50mm F2.8 SSM16-50mmf/2.8 577g
Photography Glossary
Sony-300mm-F2.8-G-SSM-II lensSony 300mm F2.8 G SSM II300mmf/2.8 2300g
Rokinon-14mm-f2.8-IF-ED-MC-Sony-Alpha lensRokinon 14mm f2.8 IF ED MC14mmf/2.8 552g
Samyang-16mm-f2.0-ED-AS-UMC-CS-Sony-Alpha lensSamyang 16mm f2.0 ED AS UMC CS16mmf/2.0 583g
Tamron-SP-AF-200-500mm-F5-6.3-Di-LD-IF-Sony-Alpha lensTamron SP AF 200-500mm F5-6.3 Di LD IF200-500mmf/5.0-6.3 1237g
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Sony-24mm-F2-SSM-Carl-Zeiss-Distagon-T lensSony 24mm F2 SSM Carl Zeiss Distagon T24mmf/2.0 555g
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Sony A57 Connectivity

The A57 has the following connectivity:

  • USB Yes
  • Wireless Yes
  • HDMI Yes

Digital cameras that consist of NFC and Bluetooth support can be controlled wirelessly with smartphones. You will be able to copy files and at times change settings with no need to connect physically to the camera.

Some applications even stream a Liveview and release the shutter in case you are not close to the camera. If the camera features a HDMI out, it can be hooked up to an external screen. Most cameras enable you to charge the battery pack using the USB port.

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Sony A57 Video info

The highest possible video quality in the Sony A57 is 1920 x 1080 and it can shoot in MPEG-4, AVCHD and H.264 file format. 1080p quality provides a good balance in video quality versus file sizes but 1080p will not leave you with much room to crop. Although the camera includes a mic jack, it is sadly missing a headphone jack which means that you won't have the capability to check your audio levels.

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Sony A57 Weather Sealing

Sony A57 does not include environment proofing so damp conditions might affect the camera.

Sony A57 Screen and Viewfinder

The Sony A57 includes a 3 inch fully articulated display supporting a resolution of 921 thousand dots.

It has got a selfie friendly screen to get self portraits and even group shots when needed. Please note that the display screen offers no touch support.

Sony SLT-A57 screen and viewfinder Photobucket discusses licensing 13 billion images with AI firms

The ViewFinder specifications regarding Sony A57 are as follows:

  • ViewFinder Electronic
  • ViewFinder Resolution 1,440 thousand dots
  • ViewFinder Coverage 100%
  • ViewFinder Magnification 0.7x

Viewfinders can be very helpful in sunny outdoor conditions which might make the camera screen washed out and difficult to view.

Sony A57 Shutter info

Sony A57 continuous shooting rate is 12.0 frames per second. The highest shutter speed is 1/4000 sec.

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Sony A57 Flash and Hot shoe info

Sony A57 includes both built-in flash plus external flash support. The highest flash sync is 1/160 sec.

Sony A57 Autofocusing info

Sony A57 includes both Phase Detect AF and Contrast Detect AF. Phase Detection autofocusing is a lot quicker & precise in comparison with Contrast Detect autofocusing. The camera includes Face detection which makes it helpful for portrait photography.

It includes 15 focus points to choose from. It also comes with Tracking AF for subjects on the move. Sony A57 has manual focus in case it is needed in low light situations or you need to have more accurate control on focus.

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Sony A57 Battery life

The battery life (NP-FM500H) in the Sony A57 is designed to last for 550 shots as per the CIPA specifications making it about average when compared to its competition. The average Entry-Level DSLR camera battery life is 589. Pentax K-x has got the best (1900) battery life in this kind of cameras.

Underneath is a listing of Entry-Level DSLR cameras which have the strongest battery life:

ModelVisualizeBattery LifeRAWNFCBluetooth
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Canon-EOS-Rebel-SL3 front thumbnailCanon SL3
A57 vs SL3
1070 yesnoyes

Sony A57 for various styles of photography

The following illustration presents a outline of the Sony A57 for various styles of photography. To look at more, visit the specific paragraph underneath.

Sony A57 Portrait photography information

The Sony A57 receives a score of 74 which is above average, and means the camera is a good fit for portrait photos. Taking portraits leans greatly towards sensor resolution, RAW support and option to work with off-camera lighting.

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manual focus
megapixel count good (16 megapixels)
sensor size is nice (APS-C)
supports face detect focus
delivers RAW files

Street photography with Sony A57

With a above average score of 75, the Sony A57 is a good choice to buy for street photography. A good street photography camera has a good balance of image quality plus portability.

Photography Glossary
fully articulated screen
image stabilization (Sensor based)
decent sensor size (APS-C)
exports RAW files

Sony A57 Sports photography highlights

A great sports photography score of 78 suggests the Sony A57 is a outstanding choice for shooting sports. A camera needs good autofocus plus fast shutter speeds for sports photography.

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image stabilization (Sensor based)
sensor resolution is decent (16 megapixels)
sensor size is good (APS-C)
provides tracking focus
comes with phase detect auto focus

Sony A57 Travel photography advice

Portability is extremely important when picking a camera for travel. In general, the Sony A57 gets a very good 67 as a travelling camera which is a respectable option to purchase for your trips.

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good resolution (16MP)
has built in flash
selfie friendly screen
missing Timelapse mode

Landscape photography with Sony A57

If you're planning to buy a camera for landscape photographs, the most essential aspect is going to be image quality. The Sony A57 at it's nice score of 72 as a landscape camera is a very decent fit among its competition.

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has manual focus
switch lenses (Sony/Minolta Alpha mount)
nice screen size (3 inches)
built in image stabilization (Sensor based)
resolution is good (16 megapixels)
sensor size is good (APS-C)
exports RAW files
no Time Lapse mode

Sony A57 Vlogging highlights

A camera for vlogging should come with a articulating display, microphone port and ideally image stabilization. Considering everything, the Sony A57 is a brilliant fit as a vlog camera as it comes to a terrific score of 77.

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selfie friendly screen
has image stabilization (Sensor based)
features face detect autofocus
high quality video (1920 x 1080 pxls)
has mic jack

Sony A57 Alternatives

If you are searching for replacements to the A57, here is a range of the top rated cameras which fall under the category of Entry-Level DSLR.

The diagram here provides you a bird's eye view of the A57 compared to it's top scoring rivals mentioned previously.

Here are a handful of other cameras you might check out as alternate options. To check out a extensive comparison, simply click the "compare" link.

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General Information
Sony SLT-A57
Entry-Level DSLR
Physical type
Compact SLR
Sensor Information
Sensor type
Sensor size
Sensor dimensions
23.5 x 15.6mm
Sensor area
Sensor resolution
16 megapixel
Anti aliasing filter
Aspect ratio
3:2 and 16:9
Peak resolution
4912 x 3264
RAW pictures
Highest native ISO
Highest enhanced ISO
Minimum native ISO
Manual focus
Touch focus
Autofocus continuous
Autofocus single
Tracking autofocus
Selective autofocus
Center weighted autofocus
Multi area autofocus
Autofocus live view
Face detection autofocus
Contract detection autofocus
Phase detection autofocus
Number of focus points
Cross focus points
Lens mounting type
Sony/Minolta Alpha
Amount of lenses
Crop factor
Type of screen
Fully Articulated
Screen sizing
3 inch
Resolution of screen
921 thousand dots
Selfie friendly
Touch operation
Screen technology
Xtra Fine TFT drive with TruBlack technology
Viewfinder Information
Viewfinder resolution
1,440 thousand dots
Viewfinder coverage
Viewfinder magnification
DXO scores
DXO Overall score
DXO Color Depth score
DXO Dynamic range score
DXO Low light score
Minimum shutter speed
30 secs
Fastest shutter speed
1/4000 secs
Continuous shutter rate
12.0 frames per sec
Shutter priority
Aperture priority
Expose Manually
Exposure compensation
Set white balance
Image stabilization
Inbuilt flash
Flash range
10.00 m (@ ISO 100)
Flash settings
Auto, On, Off, Red-Eye, Slow Sync, High Speed Sync, Rear Curtain, Fill-in, Wireless
Hot shoe
Auto exposure bracketing
WB bracketing
Fastest flash synchronize
1/160 secs
AF area
Center weighted
Video features
Supported video resolutions
1920 x 1080 (60p, 24p), 1440 x 1080 (30p), 640 x 480 (30 fps)
Highest video resolution
Video format
MPEG-4, AVCHD, H.264
Mic port
Headphone port
Eye-Fi Connected
USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/sec)
Environment sealing
Water proof
Dust proof
Shock proof
Crush proof
Freeze proof
618 gr (1.36 pounds)
132 x 98 x 81mm (5.2" x 3.9" x 3.2")
Battery life
550 images
Form of battery
Battery Pack
Battery model
Self timer
Yes (2 or 10 sec)
Time lapse feature
Storage type
SD/SDHC/SDXC/Memory Stick Pro Duo/ Pro-HG Duo
Card slots
Launch price