The Sony A3000 is a mirrorless camera in DSLR clothing. It’s not a big macho DSLR though. It’s daintier, like a “Honey I Shrunk the DSLR” small. If you want to impress the ladies, this isn’t the camera to buy, although Sony has some big full-sized he-man cameras too.
The heart of the A3000 is a 20.1 Megapickle APS-C EXMOR sensor. That’s more than most smartphones and a lot of more than many expensive cameras, which is cool because you can walk up to a guy and ask, “How many pickles do you have?” and a lot of the times you’ll win. Furthermore, those pickles are fatter and juicier and higher in photographic goodness than the typical tiny, bitter pickles found in most smartphones.
The rear screen and menus are a little disappointing though. They are nothing like a smartphone. The screen is small and it’s not a touchscreen, so you have to use the scroll wheel on the right. It’s kind of like those knobs on that old stereo your dad has tucked away in the basement. Still, you can get used to it with practice, and most of the time you can get a good photo without diving into the complicated computer screens. Just point it at anything, and like the Sony brochure promises, you’ll be taking “magazine-style” photos in no time.
The A3000 incorporates an “old man hole” for those people that want to bring the camera up to their face the way an old man takes pictures. And because it’s a mirrorless camera, the A3000 utilizes an EVF instead of the optical viewfinder in a real DSLR. This is great, as more and more people seem to prefer experiencing the world by looking at pixels of stuff instead of the actual stuff.
If you want to become a professional photographer, the Sony A3000 comes with an owner’s manual that will teach you pro type stuff like how to attach the camera strap, not to lick the battery or throw it into a fire, and how to turn the HDR mode on high like all pros do. After reading the manual, you’ll be able to press all the buttons on the camera like a pro and use the menu computer with confidence. Until then, when in doubt, press the red button. That’ll shoot HD video, which you can then put on YouTube and make money.
One of the innovative features of the A3000 is a built-in grip. Other cameras—some costing hundreds of dollars more—don’t come with a grip or force you to buy an additional grip for hundreds of dollars more. With the A3000, the grip is built right in! As with most cameras though, it’s built for righties, which really is a shame since the most creative people in the world are lefties.
At $349, the Sony A3000 is an amazing value. Despite it’s foibles, it’s a great camera for beginners.
Oh wait….hold a second please….we just got word that rumors of the A3500, the successor to the A3000, have been hitting the Internets. We take back everything that we say. The A3000 is a crappy obsolete camera. The only place we’d buy it is at the Goodwill for like $50. The end.