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Past Article Calendar

August 2008
« Jul   Sep »

Alpha 900 launch

There seems to be a lot of speculation about the Alpha 900 or Pro, and uncertainty about the timing of introduction. The August 14th date is not the 900, it’s two Cybershot models. The Alpha 900 will, as far as we are aware, be shown to the press on September 9th/10th worldwide.

It will go on sale on September 30th but we expect to see it offered by Foto Gregor, Köln, from September 23rd onwards – with one camera and grip on display in the window, and orders taken. I base this prediction on Foto Gregor’s record of the past 36 years of my attending photokina! They have never failed to show the most exciting new SLRs in their window when no other shop in the world had them available.


The actual camera will be not be for sale but will be loaned from Sony, who will be showing it at photokina starting with the pre-opening press day on September 22nd (Monday), where it is likely that Sony’s stand will be closed to the press. Some other stands will be open, and those with press passes will be able to enter the halls despite the exhibition not being open to the public.

Press preview information may be embargoed until September 23rd, or may be released immediately on September 10th, assuming that copy deadlines will in any case prevent most magazines from printing anything before photokina. Websites, however, can response within minutes and an embargo may therefore be placed on the images of the camera and new lenses. It is also possible that pre-production samples, known to be in use already, have a condition of use that no images are released from these cameras.

We hope that the new 70-400mm f/4-5.6 G SSM is shown with the Alpha 900 on Sept 9/10th too!

Shirley and I have our trip to photokina booked, and will be in Köln from Sept 20th, attending the pre-opening day in full, and returning to Scotland on the 24th in order to go to press for our October professional magazine (Master Photo Digital) edition. Pictures from the Sony stand will be posted on this site as soon after the start of photokina as possible, whether or not we are able to attend the earlier launch. If all goes to plan we will have an Alpha 900 review in the 2008 #4 edition (Autumn/Fall) of Photoworld, which will be mailed at the end of October.

To attend photokina (23rd-28th September, Tuesday to Sunday, Cologne/Köln, Germany) and be one of the first to handle the Alpha 900, check in at:


– DK

9 comments to Alpha 900 launch

  • - J -

    A900 launch will be 09.09 in internet, i will get camera at 11.09 to try for one day.

  • andyptak

    The 16-80 is a lovely lens and the ones who bash it obviously don’t own one and use it every day. I recently retired it when I bought it’s new and more expensive sibling. That didn’t last too long though, because as an all around general purpose lens it does the job superbly. Yes, the build is a bit flimsy in comparison to other Zeiss models, but look at the features you get for the price!

    My only complaint is vignetting, even a slim polariser causes problems, which mars an otherwise under appreciated lens.

  • admin

    August 14th – they announced the e-Book, two Cybershot models, two musicphones (iPhone/pod type things) and some technology – but no A900.

    Ref A700 and glass – while everyone has criticised the build and feel of the Zeiss 16-80mm, there has never really been a suggestion that the optics are influenced much by the mount design. For an architect, a lens like the 16-80mm is extremely useful and nothing else will give you the same rendering of textures, fabrics and surfaces (it has very high MTF at high frequencies – where the other zoom lenses only have listed 10 lppm and 30 lppm MTF charts, the 16-80mm includes a 40 lppm chart, like the other Zeiss designs). My 16-80mm has been in use for over a year now and is used all the time, main lens. It’s doing fine and shows no sign of wear though it looks a bit scruffy from handling.


  • Michael01

    I am just about to ‘invest’ in an A-700. Problem is with the lens selection. I am used to the Fujifilm S7000 (which, although not DSLR, is very versatile in many ways). I do a lot of outdoor, but also close-ups and interior (with a tripod whenever needed) – in other words, fairly wide range. Might help to add I am architect… I read a very good review for the Sony 24-70mm F2.8 ZA SSM Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* SAL-2470Z zoom lens (pricey as it may be), and made a note NOT to buy the Sony 18-70mm f/3.5-5.6 or the Sony 16-80mm f/3.5-4.5 DT Carl Zeiss.

    Since you mentioned about your Zeiss ‘glass’, I would much appreciate some suggestions. I don’t upgrade often – if that helps. Thanks.

  • alexramos

    What Sony announced today 14th??

  • andyptak

    I dropped a 30 year relationship with Pentax for the A700 and I can’t wait to get my hands on the A900, or whatever it’s called. I just wonder how much though? Selling all of my Pentax gear, including my beloved LX’s, barely made a dent in the purchase price of a couple of A700’s and associated Zeiss glass. I hope I can afford this baby and that’s not just gear lust talking, I think it will raise the bar of client expectations quite considerably.

  • my bet is on naming it A9 – so 100′ names for amateur to semi-pros (A200 to A700). A50 to A90 for advanced semi pro (APC-S) line (to come with all the belts and whistles such as GPS, movie mode etc.) and A5 to A9 for full frame pro line.

  • admin

    I can not confirm that. The term ‘Alpha Pro’ has been used by one member of Sony UK Alpha team, referring to the project they have been working on this summer with roadshows and training for dealers. ‘Alpha Pro’ may just mean Alpha 700 plus Alpha 900 plus new lenses, and a drive to hit new professional buyers. Or it could be that the camera will be called the Alpha Pro, Alpha Pro 900, or something else. I honestly don’t know.


  • lingoting

    Is it going to be called A900 ?thanks.