Updated (August, 2011): Compare the Sony Alpha DSLR-A550 vs Sony NEX-5N

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Reasons to buy the Sony Alpha DSLR-A550

Image stabilization
Image stabilization
Sensor shift
Startup delay
Almost no delay when powering up
500 ms startup delay
Shutter lag
Barely any delay taking photos
184 ms shutter lag
Lens availability
Slightly more lenses available
123 lenses
 

Reasons to buy the Sony Alpha NEX-5

3D
Takes 3D photos
View photos in 3D on 3D televisions
 
Differences | Recommendations | Cast your vote | Similarities | Competitors | Appearance | Discussion

differences

Advantages of the Sony DSLR-A550

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Shutter lag Much less shutter lag 184 ms vs 670 ms
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3.6x less delay when taking photos
Image stabilization Image stabilization Sensor shift vs None
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Helps eliminate blur caused by small camera movements
Battery life Much longer battery life 950 shots vs 330 shots
Help
Around 3x more shots per battery charge
Lens availability Significantly more lenses available 123 lenses vs 21 lenses
Help
Around 6x more lenses available
Storage slots Has more storage slots 2 vs 1
Help
More slots allows storing more images without switching memory cards
Startup delay Less startup delay 500 ms vs 1000 ms
Help
2x less delay when turning on
Built-in flash Built-in flash Yes vs No
Help
A built-in flash is useful for taking indoor shots where there is little light
Viewfinder Has a viewfinder Pentamirror vs None
Help
A viewfinder can help save battery life by keeping the screen turned off
Sony Alpha DSLR-A550 Learn more about
the Sony DSLR-A550

Advantages of the Sony NEX-5

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Movie format Shoots movies 1080p @ 30fps vs None
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Shoots Full HD (1080p) video as well as still pictures
Size Much smaller 111x59x38 mm vs 137x104x84 mm
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4.8x smaller
3D Takes 3D photos Yes vs No
Help
Combines multiple photos into a 3D image
Panorama Can create panoramas in-camera Yes vs No
Help
Stitches together multiple photos for a wide perspective
Weight Significantly lighter 287 g vs 632 g
Help
2.2x lighter
Thickness Significantly thinner 1.5" vs 3.3"
Help
2.2x thinner
Dynamic range More dynamic range 12.2 EV vs 11.8 EV
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0.4 f-stops more dynamic range
Overall image quality Slightly better image quality 69.0 vs 66.0
Help
Almost the same
Color depth Better color depth 22.2 bits vs 21.9 bits
Help
Distinguishes 0.3 more bits of color
Sony Alpha NEX-5 Learn more about
the Sony NEX-5
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recommendations

Which camera do we recommend? Relative to the best recent digital cameras, and ignoring price

Sony Alpha DSLR-A550 Sony Alpha DSLR-A550 43

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42 Sony Alpha NEX-5 Sony Alpha NEX-5
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        similarities

        Compared to recent digital cameras

        Common Strengths Common Weaknesses
        Screen flips out Flip-out screens Help
        Great for movies
        Screen resolution High resolution screens Help
        DSLR-A550:921k dots
        NEX-5:920k dots
        Sensor size Large sensors Help
        APS-C 23.4x15.6mm
        Interchangeable lenses Both support interchangeable lenses, which is uncommon in cameras similar to these Help
        Many lenses to choose from
        HDR In-camera HDR Help
        Combines multiple exposures
        Supports RAW Supports RAW Help
        Better editing
        External flash Support external flash Help
        Better lighting
        Sensor type Better sensor types Help
        Better in low light

        Snapsort is not aware of any interesting weaknesses shared by these two products.

        dxomark

        DXOMark

        competitors

        Shared Competitors

        Advantages

        Disadvantages

        Nikon D3100

        Nikon D3100

        Entry-level DSLR

        $273 body only

        $427 - $489 with 18-55mm lens

        Supports 24p Records movies in 24p
        Autofocus Focuses automatically while shootting video
        Thickness Is thicker
        Weight Is slightly heavier
        Canon Rebel T3i

        Canon Rebel T3i

        Entry-level DSLR

        $499 - $648 body only

        $200 - $570 with 18-55mm lens

        True resolution Takes slightly higher resolution photos
        Supports 24p Records movies in 24p
        Thickness Is thicker
        Weight Is significantly heavier
        Nikon D5100

        Nikon D5100

        Entry-level DSLR

        $378 - $415 body only

        $495 - $562 with 18-55mm lens

        Overall image quality Has slightly better image quality
        Supports 24p Records movies in 24p
        Thickness Is thicker
        Weight Is significantly heavier
        Nikon D3200

        Nikon D3200

        Entry-level DSLR

        $319 body only

        $477 with 18-55mm lens

        Overall image quality Has slightly better image quality
        True resolution Takes significantly higher resolution photos
        Thickness Is thicker
        Weight Is slightly heavier

        Sony Alpha DSLR-A550 Competitors

        Advantages

        Disadvantages

        Sony Alpha DSLR-A700

        Sony Alpha DSLR-A700

        Entry-level DSLR

        Autofocus Faster autofocus
        Color depth Better color depth
        Screen flips out Screen does not flip out
        HDR Lacks in-camera HDR
        Sony SLT-A55

        Sony SLT-A55

        Entry-level DSLR

        $1,073 body only

        $1,060 with 18-55mm lens

        Autofocus Video autofocus
        Movie format Shoots movies
        Battery life Much shorter battery life
        Storage slots Has fewer storage slots
        Sony SLT-A77

        Sony SLT A77

        Pro DSLR

        $1,103 body only

        $1,298 with 16-50mm lens

        Autofocus Video autofocus
        Movie format Shoots movies
        Startup delay Much more startup delay
        Battery life Significantly shorter battery life
        Sony SLT A58

        Sony SLT A58

        Entry-level DSLR

        $448 with 18-55mm lens

        Autofocus Video autofocus
        Movie format Shoots movies
        Screen resolution Significantly lower resolution screen
        Screen flips out Screen does not flip out
        Sony SLT-A65

        Sony SLT A65

        Entry-level DSLR

        $798 with 18-55mm lens

        Autofocus Video autofocus
        Movie format Shoots movies
        Startup delay Much more startup delay
        Battery life Significantly shorter battery life

        Sony Alpha NEX-5 Competitors

        Advantages

        Disadvantages

        Sony NEX-5N

        Sony NEX-5N

        Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

        $598 body only

        Shutter lag Much less shutter lag
        Touch screen Has a touch screen
        Startup delay Significantly more startup delay
        Lowest price Slightly more expensive
        Sony Alpha A5000

        Sony Alpha A5000

        Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

        $448 - $450 with 16-50mm lens

        Supports 24p Supports 24p
        Overall image quality Better image quality
        Screen resolution Significantly lower resolution screen
        3D Doesn't take 3D photos
        Sony NEX-7

        Sony NEX-7

        Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

        $1,052 body only

        $1,235 with 18-55mm lens

        Shutter lag Much less shutter lag
        Supports 24p Supports 24p
        Startup delay Slightly more startup delay
        Weight Heavier
        Sony Alpha NEX-6

        Sony Alpha NEX-6

        Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

        $450 body only

        $699 - $749 with 16-50mm lens

        Shutter lag Much less shutter lag
        Supports 24p Supports 24p
        3D Doesn't take 3D photos
        Startup delay Significantly more startup delay
        Sony Alpha NEX-3

        Sony Alpha NEX-3

        Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

        $420 with 16-50mm lens

        External mic jack Has an external mic jack
        Thickness Slightly thinner
        Movie format Lower resolution movies
        Dynamic range Less dynamic range

        appearance

        Sony Alpha DSLR-A550 Sony Alpha NEX-5
        Sony Alpha DSLR-A550 Sony Alpha NEX-5
        Sony Alpha DSLR-A550 Sony Alpha NEX-5

        discussion

        Sony Alpha DSLR-A550
        Alpha DSLR-A550
        Sony

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        Sony Alpha NEX-5
        Alpha NEX-5
        Sony

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