Sony offers a wide variety of digital cameras and photography products. Sony's Cyber-shot models are usually aimed at beginners, although some advanced Cyber-shot cameras provide high-end features, such as the new Sony 3D cameras. Sony also creates alpha DSLR cameras as well as DIL cameras.
This list of the best new Sony cameras includes models that have been released in the past 18 months.
Not only does the Sony NEX-6 DIL camera have a name that allows it to fit between the NEX-5 and the NEX-7, also listed here, but it also combines some of the best features of both of those slightly older DIL models.
The NEX-6 is a little larger than other DIL cameras, and Sony appears to be trying to create a bridge between DSLR and DIL cameras.
The Alpha NEX-6, which is available only in black, can use interchangeable lenses, includes 16.1MP of resolution, an electronic viewfinder, full HD video options, and a 3.0-inch high-resolution LCD touch screen that can tilt.
Sony's latest DIL camera, the Sony alpha NEX-7, will offer 24.3MP of resolution. In addition, the NEX-7 features 1080p HD video, an electronic viewfinder, 25-point autofocus, and a high-resolution 3.0-inch LCD.
All of these features are in a camera body that measures only about 1.7 inches in thickness, before you attach the interchangeable lens. The thin camera body is the key design feature of DIL cameras. The NEX-7 is available in black only.
Extremely fast autofocus for both still images and movies highlights the Sony Alpha SLT-A55V "hybrid DSLR" camera, which is among the best entry-level DSLR cameras you'll find. The award-winning A55V (sometimes called the a55) includes a new technology Sony calls "translucent mirror technology" that allows both the image sensor and the autofocus sensor to receive the light at the same time, improving speed. The a55's interior mirror does not "flip up," as in a traditional DSLR mirror. This technique means the a55 must use an EVF.
One of the most powerful cameras aimed at advanced consumer-level photographers this holiday season will carry 24.3 megapixels of resolution.
The Sony alpha a77 DSLR camera offers a powerful set of features beyond its high resolution level. It offers a 3.0-inch LCD that can tilt and swivel and full 1080p HD video. With a series of alpha interchangeable lenses available from Sony, you can find the telephoto or wide-angle capabilities you need with the a77.
The full frame Sony Alpha a99 DSLR camera provides quite a few high-end features that will appeal to intermediate- and advanced-level photographers.
The full-frame, interchangeable lens camera includes a large image sensor, which contributes to high-end image quality. It can shoot at up to 24.3 megapixels of resolution, full HD 1080p video capability, up to 10 frames per second in burst mode, and a 3-inch LCD that can tilt and swivel away from the camera.
If you commonly experience problems with motion blur and camera shake ruining your still images and videos, Sony hopes its recently released Cyber-shot DSC-H70 digital camera can help you fix those issues.
The H70 -- which is currently available in black, blue, red, or silver -- features two special modes to help with camera shake and motion blur. In addition, the Cyber-shot H70 offers a 10X optical zoom lens, 720p HD video capabilities, and a sweep panorama mode.
Sony has introduced an ultra zoom camera in a relatively thin camera body, the Cyber-shot DSC-H90.
The H90 has 16MP of resolution, a 16X optical zoom lens, 720p HD video recording, and a high-resolution 3.0-inch LCD.
You'll find the H90 in red, silver, or black camera bodies that measure about 1.33 inches in thickness. I like the look of the red camera body with the silver lens housing pictured here, and the H90 seems like a pretty nice camera for the sub-$250 price point.
High-end point and shoot cameras have grown in popularity recently, with many more manufacturers showcasing these fixed-lens cameras. Sony's Cyber-shot HX30 might be the best of the lot, though.
The HX30 (also called the HX30V and HX30B) features 18.2 megapixels of resolution, a 20X optical zoom lens, 3D capabilities, a 3.0-inch LCD, full HD video options, and a 10 frames per second burst mode.
Two potential drawbacks may keep beginning photographers from picking up this model, which was announced in the spring. First, it's a pretty plain-looking camera, only available in black. Second, it carries a pretty high price tag.
Sony has attempted to match style with toughness in its recently released touch-screen and waterproof camera, the Sony Cyber-shot DSC-TX20.
The TX20 is definitely one of the more interesting looking tough cameras around, offering five different color combinations -- green/silver, pink/red, black, orange/silver, and dark/light blue. It shoots at 16.2MP of resolution, includes a 3.0-inch touch screen LCD, full HD video capabilities, and a 4X optical zoom lens.
The TX20 is waterproof up to 16 feet, can survive a fall up to 5 feet, and is dust-proof. It's not a cheap model, but it's tough to find a waterproof camera with a touch screen LCD, so this model deserves consideration.
There aren't many point and shoot digital cameras that carry an almost $500 price tag.
Then again, there aren't many digital cameras like the ultra-thin Sony Cyber-shot TX200V, which is now available.
The TX200V has an all black front, with a tiny lens in the upper right corner. The top, side, and back panels can be colored silver, red, or purple.
The TX200V has a high-end 18.2MP CMOS image sensor, and it can shoot 1080p HD video. The 3.3-inch OLED touchscreen is a high quality display system, and the TX200V includes a 5X optical zoom lens that doesn't extend beyond the camera body at any time.
Impressively for a point and shoot model, the TX200V can capture up to 10 frames per second in burst mode at full resolution. In addition, this model has a built-in GPS, and it'll work in water depths up to 16 feet.
Not bad for a camera that measures 0.66 inches in thickness. I'm not sure there's another point and shoot camera that can match these features, other than the zoom lens. Whether people will be willing to spend what's required to receive these features will be interesting to watch.
The Cyber-shot WX9 includes a CMOS image sensor, which improves the camera's low-light performance. And, as I found in my WX9 review, this camera does a nice job in low light, with or without the flash.
Sony included limited wide angle capabilities in the WX9's 5X optical zoom lens. This camera can shoot 16.2MP still images and 1080i HD video. Look for the WX9 to be available in black, red, and silver.
The best thin zoom cameras typically are those that measure less than an inch in thickness while offering at least a 10X optical zoom lens.
These models are beginning to appear with more frequency in the market, and Sony just missed adding another model to the lineup, the Cyber-shot DSC-WX50.
The WX50, which is available in black or silver camera bodies, has 16.2 megapixels of resolution, a 2.7-inch high-resolution LCD, and full HD video capabilities.
Best of all, the WX50 measures only 0.75 inches in thickness. This camera has a 5X optical zoom lens, but it's a 10X zoom when Sony's "Clear Image Zoom" technology is considered, which is a form of digital zoom.