Updated (June 2011): Compare the Sony Alpha NEX-3 vs Sony SLT A35

Sony SLT-A33 vs Sony Alpha NEX-3

Winner
Sony SLT-A33

47

Sony Alpha NEX-3

40

Runner-up

Reasons to buy the Sony SLT-A33

High resolution screen
Screen resolution
921k dots
Image stabilization
Image stabilization
  1. Sensor shift
Almost no delay when powering up
Startup delay
800 ms startup delay
Phase detection video autofocus
Badge
fast and accurate
 

Reasons to buy the Sony Alpha NEX-3

Size
Really small
Compact (117×62×33 mm)
Thickness
Thin
1.3"
Screen resolution
High resolution screen
920k dots
Screen flips out
Flip-out screen
Great for movies

Items often bought with the SLT-A33 or NEX-3

galleries

Explore our gallery of 50 sample photos taken by the Sony Alpha NEX-3.
Explore our gallery of 50 sample photos taken by the Sony SLT-A33.

differences

Advantages of the Sony NEX-3

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Size
Significantly smaller
117×62×33 mm vs 124×92×85 mm
Help
4.1x smaller
Thickness
Significantly thinner
1.3" vs 3.3"
Help
2.6x thinner
Weight
Lighter
297 g vs 500 g
Help
More than 40% lighter
Low light performance
Slightly lower noise at high ISO
830 ISO vs 591 ISO
Help
The NEX-3 has a slight edge (0.5 f-stops) in low-noise, high-ISO performance
Battery life
Slightly longer battery life
330 shots vs 270 shots
Help
More than 20% more shots per battery charge
Focus points
Slightly more focus points
25 vs 15
Help
Set focus accurately within the frame
Sony Alpha NEX-3 Learn more about
the Sony NEX-3

Advantages of the Sony SLT-A33

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Shutter lag
Much less shutter lag
215 ms vs 670 ms
Help
3.1x less delay when taking photos
Autofocus
Faster video autofocus
Phase detection vs Contrast detection
Help
Shoot videos without worrying about focus
Image stabilization
Image stabilization
  1. Sensor shift
vs None
Help
Helps eliminate blur caused by small camera movements
Autofocus
Faster autofocus
Phase detection vs Contrast detection
Help
Catch candid moments easily
Movie format
Higher resolution movies
1080p @ 30fps vs 720p @ 30fps
Help
Shoots higher resolution Full HD (1080p) video
Lens availability
More lenses available
126 lenses vs 62 lenses
Help
More than 2x more lenses available
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
Dynamic range
More dynamic range
12.6 EV vs 12 EV
Help
0.3 f-stops more dynamic range
Overall image quality
Slightly better image quality
70.0 vs 68.0
Help
Almost the same
Color depth
Better color depth
22.8 bits vs 22.1 bits
Help
Distinguishes 0.7 more bits of color
Viewfinder
Has a viewfinder
Digital vs None
Help
A viewfinder can help save battery life by keeping the screen turned off
Startup delay
Slightly less startup delay
800 ms vs 1000 ms
Help
20% less delay when turning on
Light sensitivity (boost)
Has boost ISO
25,600 ISO vs None
Help
Allows taking photos in darker situations, often at the cost of additional noise in the image
Cross type focus points
Slightly more cross-type focus points
3 vs 0
Help
Almost the same
Sony SLT-A33 Learn more about
the Sony SLT-A33
vs

recommendations

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

Snapsort Recommends
Sony Alpha NEX-3 Sony Alpha NEX-3 40
Retailer
    Style
      Color
        You save
        vs
        47 Sony SLT-A33 Sony SLT-A33
        Retailer
          Style
            Color
              You save

              similarities

              Compared to recent digital cameras

              Common Strengths
              3D Both can take 3D photos, many cameras like these don't Help
              View photos in 3D on 3D televisions
              External mic jack You can plug a microphone into both of these Help
              Record higher quality audio with a microphone
              Screen flips out Flip-out screens Help
              Great for movies
              Movie continuous focus Focus continuously recording movies Help
              Makes it easy to get in-focus movies
              HDR In-camera HDR Help
              Combines multiple exposures
              Panorama In-camera panoramas Help
              Stitches together multiple photos into a panorama
              Interchangeable lenses Both support interchangeable lenses, which is uncommon in cameras similar to these Help
              Many lenses to choose from
              Supports RAW Supports RAW Help
              Better editing
              External flash Each supports an external flash Help
              Better lighting
              Sensor cleaning Self cleaning sensors Help
              Avoids dust in your photos
              Fastest shutter speed Fast max shutter speeds Help
              1/4000 of a second
              Common Weaknesses
              Cross type focus points Few cross-type focus points Help
              NEX-30
              SLT-A333
              Supports 24p No support for 24p Help
              Missing that film look
              Weather sealed Neither is weather sealed Help
              Need to shelter it from weather
              Touch screen No touchscreens Help
              More buttons

              dxomark

              DXOMark

              competitors

              Shared Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Sony Alpha A6000

              Sony Alpha A6000

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $548 body only

              $698 with 16-50mm lens

              Overall image quality Has slightly better image quality
              Image stabilization Has better image stabilization
              3D Doesn't take 3D photos
              Nikon D3100

              Nikon D3100

              Entry-level DSLR

              $263 body only

              $358 with 18-55mm lens

              Supports 24p Records movies in 24p
              Startup delay Has slightly less startup delay
              Thickness Is thicker
              Weight Is slightly heavier
              Sony Alpha ILC-3000

              Sony Alpha ILC-3000

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              Overall image quality Has slightly better image quality
              Image stabilization Has better image stabilization
              Sensor cleaning Lacks a self cleaning sensor
              3D Doesn't take 3D photos
              Nikon D3200

              Nikon D3200

              Entry-level DSLR

              $289 body only

              $349 - $447 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
              Nikon D3300

              Nikon D3300

              Entry-level DSLR

              $430 - $497 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
              Canon EOS Rebel T5

              Canon EOS Rebel T5

              Entry-level DSLR

              $319 body only

              $399 with 18-55mm lens

              True resolution Takes slightly higher resolution photos
              Supports 24p Records movies in 24p
              Sensor cleaning Lacks a self cleaning sensor
              Thickness Is thicker
              Canon Kiss X5

              Canon Kiss X5

              Entry-level DSLR

              $1,299 body only

              True resolution Takes slightly higher resolution photos
              Supports 24p Records movies in 24p
              Lowest price Is slightly more expensive
              Thickness Is thicker

              Sony Alpha NEX-3 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Sony Alpha NEX-3N

              Sony Alpha NEX-3N

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $420 with 16-50mm lens

              Shutter lag Much less shutter lag
              Supports 24p Supports 24p
              Screen resolution Significantly lower resolution screen
              External mic jack Lacks an external mic jack
              Sony Alpha NEX-5

              Sony Alpha NEX-5

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $360 body only

              $481 with 16-50mm lens

              Movie format Higher resolution movies
              Dynamic range More dynamic range
              External mic jack Lacks an external mic jack
              Thickness Slightly thicker
              Sony NEX C3

              Sony NEX C3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $212 body only

              $571 with 18-55mm lens

              Image stabilization Image stabilization
              Shutter lag Much less shutter lag
              External mic jack Lacks an external mic jack
              Startup delay Slightly more startup delay
              Sony Alpha A5000

              Sony Alpha A5000

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $279 body only

              $440 - $448 with 16-50mm lens

              Overall image quality Better image quality
              Supports 24p Supports 24p
              3D Doesn't take 3D photos
              Screen resolution Significantly lower resolution screen
              Sony NEX-F3

              Sony NEX-F3

              Mirrorless interchangeable-lens

              $444 with 18-55mm lens

              Shutter lag Much less shutter lag
              Supports 24p Supports 24p
              External mic jack Lacks an external mic jack
              Startup delay More startup delay

              Sony SLT-A33 Competitors

              Advantages

              Disadvantages

              Sony SLT-A37

              Sony SLT-A37

              Entry-level DSLR

              $550 with 18-55mm lens

              Supports 24p Supports 24p
              Shutter lag Less shutter lag
              Screen resolution Much lower resolution screen
              Screen size Significantly smaller screen
              Sony SLT A58

              Sony SLT A58

              Entry-level DSLR

              $330 body only

              $498 with 18-55mm lens

              Supports 24p Supports 24p
              Battery life Significantly longer battery life
              3D Doesn't take 3D photos
              Screen resolution Significantly lower resolution screen
              Sony SLT A35

              Sony SLT A35

              Entry-level DSLR

              $549 body only

              $500 with 18-55mm lens

              Overall image quality Slightly better image quality
              Battery life Longer battery life
              Screen flips out Screen does not flip out
              Continuous shooting Shoots slightly slower
              Sony Alpha DSLR-A390

              Sony Alpha DSLR-A390

              Entry-level DSLR

              $427 body only

              Storage slots Has more storage slots
              Battery life Longer battery life
              Autofocus Lacks video autofocus
              3D Doesn't take 3D photos

              appearance

              Sony Alpha NEX-3 Sony SLT-A33
              Sony Alpha NEX-3 Sony SLT-A33
              Sony Alpha NEX-3 Sony SLT-A33

              discussion

              Sony Alpha NEX-3
              Alpha NEX-3
              Sony

              Report a correction
              Sony SLT-A33
              SLT-A33
              Sony

              Report a correction

              Showing 2 comments

              Avatar for Snapsort Snapsort (2:30 PM, September 15, 2010)
              Thanks for pointing those out! We've fixed #1 and #2 for both the SLT-A33 and SLT-A55.

              You also mentioned that the NEX3 lenses have optical stabilization. Snapsort only compares built in image stabilization, since some lenses are stabilized and others aren't. From what I can tell, only 2 of the 3 NEX lenses have image stabilization (steady shot as Sony calls it), and there are image stabilized lenses available for the SLT-A33 and other Sony DSLRs too.
               
              El Guesto (10:40 AM, September 15, 2010)
              Uhm... Quite a few mistakes:

              1. The NEX3 has a flip-out LCD. It articulates.
              2. The NEX3 can AF in video mode.
              3. The NEX3 lenses have optical stabilization.