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Sony A58 Comparison Review

The Sony Alpha SLT-A58 is a DSLR (Digital Single Lens Reflex) camera that was officially introduced in February 2013 and is equipped with an APS-C sensor. It offers a resolution of 19.8 megapixel.

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Is the Sony A58 a good camera? The A58 has a Camera Elo of 1682. This rating puts the A58 below average of all digital single lens reflex cameras. In terms of its sensor size category (APS cameras), the A58 also ranks below average. – Well, the Sony A58 is more than 6 years old, and there have been many other good digital cameras released since 2013.

Headline Specifications
Sony A58
Digital single lens reflex
Sony A mount lenses
19.8 MP, APS-C Sensor
1080/60i Video
ISO 100-16000 (100-25600)
Electronic viewfinder (1440k dots)
2.7" LCD, 460k dots
Tilting screen (no touchscreen)
5 shutter flaps per second
In-body stabilization
690 shots per battery charge
129 x 95 x 78 mm, 492 g


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Read on to find out more about the camera's size, sensor, features, reception by expert reviewers, and how it compares to other digital cameras.

Body comparison with a credit card

The side-by-side display below illustrates the physical size of the Sony A58 vis-à-vis a credit card. Three successive views from the front, the top, and the rear are shown. All width, height and depth measures are rounded to the nearest millimeter.

Sony A58 vs credit card front
A58 versus credit card top view
A58 and credit card rear side

The table below summarizes the key physical specs of the Sony A58 alongside a set of comparators. If you want to review a camera pair side-by-side, just select a right-side comparator from among the camera models in the table. Alternatively, you can also move across to the CAM-parator tool and choose from the broad selection of possible comparisons there.

Camera Body Specifications
  Camera
Model
Camera
Width
Camera
Height
Camera
Depth
Camera
Weight
Battery
Life
(CIPA)
Weather
Sealing
(yes/no)
Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
 
Sony A58 129 mm 95 mm 78 mm 492 g 690 n Feb 2013 599- i Sony A58
 
Canon 100D« » 117 mm 91 mm 69 mm 407 g 380 n Mar 2013 549- i Canon 100D
 
Canon 700D« » 133 mm 100 mm 79 mm 580 g 440 n Mar 2013 649- i Canon 700D
 
Nikon D3300« » 124 mm 98 mm 76 mm 430 g 700 n Jan 2014 499- i Nikon D3300
 
Nikon D3200« » 125 mm 96 mm 77 mm 505 g 540 n Apr 2012 599- i Nikon D3200
 
Sony A68« » 143 mm 104 mm 81 mm 610 g 540 n Nov 2015 699- i Sony A68
 
Sony A7 II« » 127 mm 96 mm 60 mm 599 g 350 Y Nov 2014 1,999- i Sony A7 II
 
Sony A5100« » 110 mm 63 mm 36 mm 283 g 400 n Aug 2014 549 i i Sony A5100
 
Sony A6000« » 120 mm 67 mm 45 mm 344 g 360 n Feb 2014 599- i Sony A6000
 
Sony A3000« » 128 mm 91 mm 85 mm 411 g 470 n Aug 2013 329- i Sony A3000
 
Sony RX100« » 102 mm 58 mm 36 mm 240 g 330 n Jun 2012 649- i Sony RX100
Note: Measurements and pricing do not include easily detachable parts, such as interchangeable lenses or optional viewfinders.

The listed prices provide an indication of the market segment that the manufacturer of the cameras have been targeting. The Sony A58 was launched in the US market at a price of $599. Usually, retail prices stay at first close to the launch price, but after several months, discounts become available. Later in the product cycle and, in particular, when the replacement model is about to appear, further discounting and stock clearance sales often push the camera price considerably down. Then, after the new model is out, very good deals can frequently be found on the pre-owned market.

Sony A58:
Check Ebay offers

Sensor comparison with a 35mm slide

The size of the imaging sensor is a crucial determinant of image quality. All other things equal, a large sensor will have larger individual pixel-units that offer better low-light sensitivity, wider dynamic range, and richer color-depth than smaller pixels in a sensor of the same technological generation. Further, a large sensor camera will give the photographer additional creative options when using shallow depth-of-field to isolate a subject from its background. On the downside, larger sensors are more costly to manufacture and tent to lead to bigger and heavier cameras and lenses.

The Sony A58 features an APS-C sensor and has a format factor (sometimes also referred to as "crop factor") of 1.5. Within the spectrum of camera sensors, this places the Sony A58 among the medium-sized sensor cameras that aim to strike a balance between image quality and portability.

Sony A58 sensor measures

For most cameras, data on sensor performance has been reported by DXO Mark. This service determines an overall sensor rating, as well as sub-scores for low-light sensitivity ("DXO Sports"), dynamic range ("DXO Landscape"), and color depth ("DXO Portrait"). The adjacent table reports on the physical sensor characteristics and the outcomes of the DXO sensor quality tests for a sample of comparator-cameras.

Sensor Characteristics
  Camera
Model
Sensor
Class
Resolution
(MP)
Horiz.
Pixels
Vert.
Pixels
Video
Format
DXO
Portrait
DXO
Landscape
DXO
Sports
DXO
Overall
Camera
Model
 
Sony A58 APS-C 19.8 5456 36321080/60i23.312.575374Sony A58
 
Canon 100D« » APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.811.384363Canon 100D
 
Canon 700D« » APS-C 17.9 5184 34561080/30p21.711.268161Canon 700D
 
Nikon D3300« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.312.8138582Nikon D3300
 
Nikon D3200« » APS-C 24.1 6016 40001080/30p24.113.2113181Nikon D3200
 
Sony A68« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60i24.113.570179Sony A68
 
Sony A7 II« » Full Frame 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.913.6244990Sony A7 II
 
Sony A5100« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p23.812.7134780Sony A5100
 
Sony A6000« » APS-C 24.0 6000 40001080/60p24.113.1134782Sony A6000
 
Sony A3000« » APS-C 19.8 5456 36321080/60i23.712.8106878Sony A3000
 
Sony RX100« » 1-inch 20.0 5472 36481080/60p22.612.439066Sony RX100

Many modern cameras cannot only take still pictures, but also record videos. The A58 indeed provides movie recording capabilities. The highest resolution format that the A58 can use is 1080/60i.

Feature comparison

Beyond body and sensor, cameras can and do differ across a range of features. For example, the A58 has an electronic viewfinder with a resolution of 1440k dots. The viewfinder offers a field of view of 100% and a magnification of 0.57x. The following tables report on some other key feature differences and similarities of the Sony A58 and comparable cameras.

Core Features
  Camera
Model
Viewfinder
(Type or
'000 dots)
Control
Panel
(yes/no)
LCD
Size
(inch)
LCD
Resolution
('000 dots)
LCD
Attach-
ment
Touch
Screen
(yes/no)
Mech
Shutter
Speed
Shutter
Flaps
(1/sec)
Built-in
Flash
(yes/no)
Built-in
Image
Stab
Camera
Model
 
Sony A581440 n 2.7 460 tilting n 1/4000s 5.0 Y Y Sony A58
 
Canon 100D« »optical n 3.0 1040 fixed Y 1/4000s 4.9 Y n Canon 100D
 
Canon 700D« »optical n 3.0 1040 swivel Y 1/4000s 5.0 Y n Canon 700D
 
Nikon D3300« »optical n 3.0 921 fixed n 1/4000s 5.0 Y n Nikon D3300
 
Nikon D3200« »optical n 3.0 921 fixed n 1/4000s 4.0 Y n Nikon D3200
 
Sony A68« »1440 Y 2.7 460 tilting n 1/4000s 8.0 Y Y Sony A68
 
Sony A7 II« »2400 n 3.0 1230 tilting n 1/8000s 5.0 n Y Sony A7 II
 
Sony A5100« »- n 3.0 922 tilting Y 1/4000s 6.0 Y n Sony A5100
 
Sony A6000« »1440 n 3.0 922 tilting n 1/4000s 11.0 Y n Sony A6000
 
Sony A3000« »202 n 3.0 230 fixed n 1/4000s 2.5 Y n Sony A3000
 
Sony RX100« »- n 3.0 1229 fixed n 1/2000s 10.0 Y Y Sony RX100

One convenient feature of the A58 is the presence of an on-board flash. While this built-in flash is not very powerful, it can at times be useful as a fill-in light to brighten deep shadow areas.

 

Connection comparison

For some imaging applications, the extent to which a camera can communicate with its environment can be an important aspect in the camera decision process. The table below provides an overview of the connectivity of the Sony Alpha SLT-A58 and, in particular, the interfaces the cameras (and selected comparators) provide for accessory control and data transfer.

Input-Output Connections
  Camera
Model
Hotshoe
Port
Internal
Microphone
Internal
Speaker
Microphone
Port
Headphone
Port
HDMI
Port
USB
Type
WiFi
Support
NFC
Support
Bluetooth
Support
Camera
Model
 
Sony A58YstereomonoY-mini2.0---Sony A58
 
Canon 100D« »YmonomonoY-mini2.0---Canon 100D
 
Canon 700D« »YstereomonoY-mini2.0---Canon 700D
 
Nikon D3300« »YmonomonoY-mini2.0---Nikon D3300
 
Nikon D3200« »YmonomonoY-mini2.0---Nikon D3200
 
Sony A68« »YstereomonoY-micro2.0---Sony A68
 
Sony A7 II« »YstereomonoYYmicro2.0YY-Sony A7 II
 
Sony A5100« »-stereomono--micro2.0YY-Sony A5100
 
Sony A6000« »Ystereomono--micro2.0YY-Sony A6000
 
Sony A3000« »Ystereomono--mini2.0---Sony A3000
 
Sony RX100« »-stereomono--micro2.0---Sony RX100

It is notable that the A58 has a microphone port. Such an external microphone input can help to substantially improve the quality of audio recordings when a good external microphone is used.

 

Expert reviews

While the specs-based evaluation of cameras is instructive in revealing their potential as photographic tools, it remains incomplete and does no justice, for example, to the way the A58 handle or perform in practice. At times, user reviews, such as those published at amazon, address these issues in a useful manner, but such feedback is on many occasions incomplete, inconsistent, and unreliable. This is where reviews by experts come in. The adjacent table relays the overall verdicts of several of the most popular camera review sites (cameralabs, dpreview, ephotozine, imaging-resource, photographyblog).

Review Scores
  Camera
Model
cameralabs dpreview ephotozine imaging-resource photographyblog Camera
Launch
(announced)
Launch
Price
(USD)
Street
Price
(USD)
Used
Price
(USD)
Camera
Model
 
Sony A58--4.5/54.5/54.5/5 Feb 2013 599- i Sony A58
 
Canon 100D« »+78/1004/54/54/5 Mar 2013 549- i Canon 100D
 
Canon 700D« »-76/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Mar 2013 649- i Canon 700D
 
Nikon D3300« »+77/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Jan 2014 499- i Nikon D3300
 
Nikon D3200« »+ +73/1004.5/54.5/54.5/5 Apr 2012 599- i Nikon D3200
 
Sony A68« »--4/5-4/5 Nov 2015 699- i Sony A68
 
Sony A7 II« »+82/1004.5/55/55/5 Nov 2014 1,999- i Sony A7 II
 
Sony A5100« »+-4.5/54.5/55/5 Aug 2014 549 i i Sony A5100
 
Sony A6000« »+80/1004.5/55/55/5 Feb 2014 599- i Sony A6000
 
Sony A3000« »+-4/54.5/54/5 Aug 2013 329- i Sony A3000
 
Sony RX100« »+ +78/1004/55/55/5 Jun 2012 649- i Sony RX100
Notes: (+ +) highly recommended; (+) recommended; (o) reviewed; (-) not available.

Care should be taken when interpreting the review scores above, though. The ratings are only valid when referring to cameras in the same category and of the same age. A score, therefore, has to be seen in close connection to the price and market introduction time of the camera, and comparing ratings of very distinct cameras or ones that are far apart in terms of their release date have little meaning. Also, kindly note that some of the listed sites have over time developped their review approaches and their reporting style.

Sony A58 FAQ

Below are some additional questions and answers concerning some particular features of the A58.

What type of imaging sensor is used in the A58?

The camera has a CMOS (Complementary Metal–Oxide–Semiconductor) sensor at its core.

What is the ISO sensitivity range of the A58?

The camera has a native sensitivity range from ISO 100 to ISO 16000.

What is the life expectancy of the shutter in the Sony Alpha SLT-A58?

Sony mentions a shutter rating of 100 000 actuations for the A58. This number represents a Mean Time before Failure, that is an average value. The shutter might fail earlier, or it might last longer. Anyway, in order to exhaust the expected shutter life of the A58 over, say, three years, one would have to take about 100 pictures each and every day.

How do I find the shutter count on my Sony A58?

Sony embeds the number of shutter actuations in image metadata. You can check the number of shots that your A58 has taken up to now by uploading a recent image to the online shutter count app.

Is it difficult to use manual focus lenses with the Sony A58?

The A58 offers focus peaking as a manual focus aid. This feature works by placing a colored highlight on in-focus zones within the image.

Does the Sony A58 feature an autofocus assist light?

Yes, the camera has a lamp built-in that can illuminate the subject and improve autofocus in low-light settings.

What is the fastest shutter speed that can be used with flash?

The A58's flash sync speed is 1/160 sec.

Which battery does the A58 use?

The camera gets its power from the NP-FM500H (here at amazon), which is a rechargeable Lithium-Ion power pack.

Is there a vertical grip available for the A58?

Sony does not offer an optional battery grip, but third party suppliers do (see here on eBay).

Camera to camera comparisons

If you would like to see a side-by-side review of this and another camera, just make your choice using the following search menu. An an alternative, you can also directly jump to any one of the listed comparisons that were previously generated by the CAM-parator tool.

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    Specifications Summary
    Camera Model Sony A58
    Camera Type Digital single lens reflex
    Camera Lens Sony A mount lenses
    Launch Date February 2013
    Launch Price USD 599
    Sensor Specs
    Sensor Technology CMOS
    Sensor Format APS-C Sensor
    Sensor Size 23.5 x 15.6 mm
    Sensor Area 366.6 mm2
    Sensor Diagonal 28.2 mm
    Crop Factor 1.5x
    Sensor Resolution 19.8 Megapixels
    Image Resolution 5456 x 3632 pixels
    Pixel Pitch 4.31 μm
    Pixel Density 5.41 MP/cm2
    Moiré control Anti-Alias filter
    Movie Capability 1080/60i Video
    ISO Setting 100-16000 ISO
    ISO Boost 100-25600 ISO
    DXO Sensor Quality (score) 74
    DXO Color Depth (bits) 23.3
    DXO Dynamic Range (EV) 12.5
    DXO Low Light (ISO) 753
    Screen Specs
    Viewfinder Type Electronic viewfinder
    Viewfinder Field of View 100%
    Viewfinder Magnification 0.57x
    Viewfinder Resolution 1440k dots
    LCD Framing Live View
    Rear LCD Size 2.7 inch
    LCD Resolution 460k dots
    LCD Attachment Tilting screen
    Shooting Specs
    Autofocus System Phase-detect AF
    Manual Focusing AidFocus Peaking
    Maximum Shutter Speed 1/4000s
    Continuous Shooting 5 shutter flaps/s
    Shutter Life Expectancy100 000 actuations
    Silent Shootingno E-Shutter
    Time Lapse Photographyno Intervalometer
    Image StabilizationIn-body stabilization
    Fill Flash Build-in Flash
    Storage Medium MS or SDXC cards
    Second Storage Option Single card slot
    UHS card support no
    Connectivity Specs
    External Flash Hotshoe
    USB Connector USB 2.0
    HDMI Port mini HDMI
    Microphone Port External MIC port
    Wifi Support no Wifi
    Body Specs
    Battery Type NP-FM500H power pack
    Battery Life (CIPA)690 shots per charge
    Body Dimensions 129 x 95 x 78 mm
    (5.1 x 3.7 x 3.1 in)
    Camera Weight 492 g (17.4 oz)

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