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Following up on a series of worldwide leaks, Sony today officially announced the upcoming Alpha 290 and Alpha 390 entry-level SLRs.
*A jump in resolution is the major upgrade from
the A230 to the A290 shown here.*
The A290 replaces the low-end A230 (currently selling for $450 with a kit lens), stepping up resolution to 14.2MP (from 10.2MP) and providing a more ergonomic hand grip. There are only a handful of additional changes from the earlier model; the A290 is slightly deeper than the A230 and offers a higher maximum playback magnification, but the 2.7-inch LCD, 2.5fps burst rate and in-camera image stabilization remain unchanged. Still missing in action: Live View and any video mode at all. The A290 will be priced at $499.99, with an 18-55mm kit lens.
The A390 offers an articulated LCD and Live View shooting.
Or, if you have an additional $100 burning a hole in your pocket, you could splurge for the Sony A390, the replacement for the current A330, which offers the same upgrades as the A290 along with the Live View capability and bottom-hinged LCD found on the soon-to-be-retired A330.
Both cameras are scheduled to ship in mid to late July.