Sony a3500 at a glance

Sony a3500

Sony a3500

Sony a3000 and Sony a3500 are the only mirrorless cameras with APS-C sensor, made in SLR form factor. That means they outwardly resemble classic cropped SLR cameras - have a large handle, a “beak” of the built-in flash, a viewfinder on the other side of this beak, and relatively large sizes. Unfortunately, or fortunately, Sony no longer releases such cameras.

Sony a3500 and Sony a3000, in fact, are the same camera. The only differences between the Sony a3500 and Sony a3000 are as follows:

  1. Sony a3500 newer model introduced 24 March 2014 yearwhile the camera Sony a3000 was introduced 27 August 2013 year.
  2. Sony a3500 comes with a rare and simple regular lens Sony E 4-5.6 / 18-50 (SEL1850), While the Sony a3000 Comes with a classic full-time / whale lens Sony E 3.5-5.6 / 18-55 OSS (Optical Steady Shot, E-mount).
  3. The Sony a3500 was shipped to only a few countries and regions. Model Sony a3000 sold without any restrictions

Sony a3000 became the first camera to be called in a new way - Sony ILCE (Interchangeable Lens Camera with E-mount, a camera with interchangeable lenses and an 'E' mount). In the future, this camera name was transferred to full-frame cameras Sony ILCE Sony a7, a7r, a7s, a9 rulers, as well as Sony NEX / Alpha cropped cameras. IN EXIF images from all these cameras in the field 'model name' is written 'ILCE + model serial number'. So Sony a3500 in EXIF called 'ILCE-3500'.

Sony a3500

Sony a3500

Main features of Sony a3500:

  1. Exmor APS-C HD CMOS sensor at 20 MP, maximum image size: 5456 X 3632 pixels (19.816.192 pixels). The same sensor was used in cameras Sony a3000, Sony a5000 and in the module for smartphones Sony QX1. Most likely, the same sensor also uses a camera with a translucent mirror Sony SLT a58. And with a high degree of probability, the same sensor is used by Pentax K-S1 and Pentax K-S2 SLR cameras. The a3500's sensor compares favorably with some older 14 and 16 MP Sony sensors with the ability to use a minimum ISO of 100 instead of a minimum of ISO 200.
  2. The ISO range is 100-16.000 in increments of 1 step. There is an auto-ISO without setting any parameters (the entire ISO range is available, and the minimum excerpt always 1/60 of a second). The BIONZ processor is working on the image, the noise level is close to the old 16 MP and the first 24 MP sensors from Sony.
  3. Shutter with the first electronic shutter, excerpts from 1/4000 second to 30 seconds. Exposure 1/160 second sync.
  4. Focusing only by contrast, there is no hybrid auto focus using phase sensors.
  5. FUll HD 50i AVCHD or 25p, H264, maximum 24 Mbps, built-in stereo microphone. There is no connector for an external microphone, no HDMI for recording video or broadcasting to an external device. It's important: some a3500 cameras support FUll HD 60i. Information about the maximum video quality on the a3500 is indicated on the information plate on the bottom of the camera. Most likely, the differences are related to the region or country into which this or that party was preparing.
  6. EVI 0.2 inch QVGA Tru-Finder 201.600 points and with an increase of 0.7 x and 100% frame coverage, there is a diopter adjustment. In my time Sony a3000/ a3500 were the only alternative for the more expensive Sony NEX-6 и Sony NEX-7 with integrated EVI.
  7. The display is 3 inches and 230.000 points, not rotary, not touch. Fairly mediocre. a3000/ a3500 use the simplest display among all Sony NEX / ALPHA / ILCE APS-C cameras.
  8. Switch between display or EVI always performed using the button located to the left of the main command dial.
  9. Also Sony a3500 is one of slowest cameras among all Sony NEX / Aplpha / ILCE. Maximum burst speed with support for autofocus and metering exposure2.5 frames per second. With fixed autofocus and exposure - 3.5 frames per second.
  10. With a fast memory card in JPEG Fine 20M format, continuous shooting does not slow down at all. RAW + JPEG is buffered only 6 shotsthen the burst speed drops significantly. It's important: a3500 can not shoot only in RAW format, you can either JPEG, or RAW + JPEG FINE
  11. The camera can use a Memory Stick PRO Duo / XC-HG Duo or SDHC / SDXC without high-speed bus support. SD memory cards are deeply recessed into the recess of the card reader and it is not always convenient to remove them.
  12. There is only one Micro USB connector and a multi-connector on the shoe. The camera can be charged via Micro USB.
  13. The covers of all compartments are plastic. Plastic finger patch, just mimics a rubber pad. Overlay on EVI also plastic. The handle is rubberized with tight rubber that does not float over time.
  14. It's important: the cameras are used plastic bayonet petals. Only the outer bayonet ring is metallic. In fact, the lens on the camera is fixed using these petals, and therefore we can assume that the a3500 mount is still plastic. I noticed that with some lenses there is a slight backlash in the bayonet mount. I associate such a backlash with plastic petals.
  15. The instructions stated that on a single battery charge the camera can stretch about 480 shots. But this figure is due to the use of the built-in flash. I managed to get more than 5.000 frames on a single charge.
  16. There are several interesting and useful features: Auto HDR, Auto DR, automatic correction of some lens flaws, shutter release with a smile, detection of faces in the frame, panorama function, various creative shooting modes, focus picking, quick zoom for precise focusing etc.
Sony a3500

Sony a3500

Sample Photos

All photos in the review are shown without processing. Used a Sony α3500 camera and lens Yongnuo YN50mm F1.8S DA DSM. All photos are on-camera JPEG. Picture control mode 'Standard 0/0/0', several pictures in the 'Standard 0/1/1' mode. Functions' Corr. ob .: Shading ',' Corr. ob .: Chrome. aberr. ' and 'Corr. Rev .: Distortion 'were disabled.

Original JPEG '.JPG' photos can be download from this link (129 photos, 600 MB). Original RAW '.RW2' photos can be download from this link (32 photos, 500 MB).

Sony a3500

Sony a3500 with lens Sony E 4-5.6 / 18-50 (SEL1850)

More sample photos

Many examples of photos on the Sony α3500 with links to the source files can be found in the reviews of the following lenses:

  1. Carl Zeiss Sonnar E 1,8 / 24 ZA T * (Sony SEL24F18Z)
  2. Sony E 4-5.6 / 18-50 (SEL1850)
  3. 7Artisans 35 / 1.2
  4. 7Artisans 55 / 1.4
  5. Yongnuo YN50mm F1.8S DA DSM
  6. RO3-3M 2/50
  7. Pergear 25mm 1: 1.8 HD.MC
  8. Tamron 180mm 1: 3.5 LD DI SP AF [IF] MACRO 1: 1
  9. Milvus 2/35 ZF.2 (Zeiss Distagon 2/35 T *)

My experience

I took the Sony a3500 as a cropped camera with an APS-C sensor and E-mount to create several full-fledged reviews of cropped lenses for this mount. As a result, this camera got accustomed to me and I often shoot something on it (the list of reviews in which she took part is much larger than the one located above).

First of all, I took the Sony a3500 because of the convenient grip, similar to the classic large grip of SLR cameras. When shooting for days on end, you greatly appreciate the comfort of the grip. Otherwise, camera control is very limited, most settings can be set only through the main menu.

I got the impression that the Sony a3500 saved wherever they could. It seems that all the basic functions are in place, but at the same time, everything is very truncated and as simple as possible (display, EVI, menu, buffer, bayonet tabs, connectors, etc.). The inscription 'Sony' from the shoulder strap fell off literally after 2 weeks of use. True, it is necessary to remember that the camera at the time of sales, as well as now, in the used market. photographic equipment is very cheap.

Sorry EVI I was disappointed, but I quickly got used to it. With grief in half it can be used. The main display is also rather weak, not rotary and not touch, with not the best viewing angles. The most unpleasant feature was the inability to shoot in RAW (only RAW + JPEG or JPEG).

Some users have assured me and are assuring me that the Sony a3500 is Sony's best mirrorless crop in terms of color reproduction, but the color of the Sony a3500 is still very similar to the old models with 16 MP sensors from Sony: NEX-C3, NEX-F3, NEX-3N, NEX-5N, NEX-5R, NEX-5T, NEX-6. In terms of noise and dynamic range, the Sony a3500 is located slightly above older cameras with a 16 MP sensor, and is not much inferior to some 24 MP cameras.

All Sony E mirrorless cameras with APS-C sensor

All Sony E lenses for APS-C

  1. 16mm f / 2.8
  2. 20mm f / 2.8 (black / silver)
  3. 24mm f / 1.8 ZEISS ZA
  4. 30mm f / 3.5 Macro
  5. 35mm f / 1.8 U.S.
  6. 50mm f / 1.8 U.S. (black / silver)
  7. 10-18mm f / 4 U.S.
  8. 16-50mm f / 3.5-5.6 PZ U.S. (black / silver)
  9. 16-55mm f / 2.8 G
  10. 16-70mm f / 4 U.S. ZEISS ZA
  11. 18-50mm f / 4-5.6
  12. 18-55mm f / 3.5-5.6 U.S. (black / silver, Japan / Thailand)
  13. 18-105mm f / 4 G PZ U.S.
  14. 18-110mm f / 4 G PZ U.S.
  15. 18-135mm f / 3.5-5.6 U.S.
  16. 18-200mm f / 3.5-6.3 U.S.
  17. 18-200mm f / 3.5-6.3 U.S. LE
  18. 18-200mm f / 3.5-6.3 PZ U.S.
  19. 55-210mm f / 4.5-6.3 U.S. (black / silver)
  20. 70-350mm f / 4.5–6.3 G U.S.

Third-party autofocus lenses for Sony E APS-C:

Materials on the topic

  1. Full-frame mirrorless systems. List of all cameras and lenses to them. Mirrorless fever, discussion, choice and more
  2. All cropped mirrorless cameras, discussion of systems
  3. Mirrorless crop that has stopped or is stopping its development
  4. Fallen Digital Mirror Systems
  5. JVI or EVI
  6. Simple and clear medium format
  7. Smartphone Impact
  8. What's next?

Here on the site comments do not require registration. In the comments, you can ask a question on the topic and they will answer you, as well as you can express your opinion or describe your experience. For the selection of photographic equipment, I recommend large catalogs, for example E-Catalog. Many little things for the photo can be found on AliExpress.

Material prepared by Arkady Shapoval. Do not forget subscribe to my instagram.

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Comments: 21, on the topic: Short review Sony a3500

  • Sergei

    The most important question that no one touched upon reviewing these cameras for some reason is whether it is possible to focus with manual lenses with picking and / or magnification using the camera screen from the top or bottom point of shooting ??? Does the screen completely “go blank”?
    Thank you in advance!

    • Arkady Shapoval

      I pointed out that the viewing angles are weak. If the shooting conditions, background lighting contributes to this, then something else is possible, but if it is a sunny day, flooded with light, then this is impossible.

      • Yuriy75

        So does picking with manuals work?

        • Arkady Shapoval

          Yes, this is indicated in the review.

  • Sergei

    “... then this is impossible.” - this is exactly what I wanted to know. Thank!

  • Andrei

    “At one time, the Sony a3000 / a3500 was the only alternative to the Sony NEX-7 with integrated EVI.” - if I am not mistaken, Sony NEX6 was released before the A3000 (announcement of 2012), and this was just an alternative to NEX7, also with a built-in video player.

  • Jankowsky

    YES ! Finally it happened! Review of the best Sony E crop in the world in color reproduction. It’s me who made Arkady search and buy this camera. I took a very long time shooting on the NEX 3N and a5000 before buying the a3500. So - no one has ever written about this anywhere - the a5000 and a3500 have completely different color rendering and rendering. The picture of the a3500 is less noisy on all ISOs and much more plastic, more reminiscent of NEX 3N, but with noticeably better detail. A5000 has a very technical rough drawing, very sharp on ISO 100 (with Sigma fixes), but then the picture falls apart - ISO more than 200 is not working. In addition, it does not export under-exposures at all. The shadows cease to stretch and the terrible watercolor soap rushes - which is not observed in the NEX and a3500. There is also a rumor that the a3000 has even better color. A3500 produces a phenomenally sharp, clean and beautiful picture in combination with Kamlan 50 \ F1.1 Mark II, Sigma 16 \ 1.4, Sigma 60 \ 2.8 Art lenses

    • Alex

      just like in that joke “what we mistook for an orgasm” ...

      at least the camera suffers from a terribly crooked jpeg engine and it seems that all its imperfection, some take for increased “plasticity” and so on and so forth)

      • Sergei

        Is it:
        “.... the camera suffers from a terribly crooked jpeg engine”
        compatible with this:
        “.... The shadows cease to stretch and the terrible watercolor soap rushes - which is not observed with NEX and a3500 ...”?
        Probably it was a matter of “ductility” namely RAW?

    • Arkady Shapoval

      You were not inspired, although you constantly talked about it. If anything, I do not agree with all your conclusions.

    • Andrei

      filmed on NEX6 for many years and really liked the color rendering (even after the A7 full frame)
      Then he looked at the characteristics of the sensors, at least here:
      NEX6 has almost the highest Full Well Capacity of these cameras, and actually the DD.
      Did not compare A3000 and NEX6?

  • Sergei

    I have this very camera for a long time.
    The main thing is inexpensive with quite good quality.
    Good grip for large interchangeable lenses.
    The main disadvantage is weak LCD screens (viewfinder and display).
    Acquire only for experienced users (I do not recommend beginners).
    You can evaluate the quality of shots only at home on a good display.

    • Oleg

      Somehow dumbly large lenses on a plastic lens mount ... Not? .. My nex-5n has metal. Although such crumbs rather hold the glass. :)

      • Arkady Shapoval

        With big Tamron 180mm 1: 3.5 LD DI SP AF [IF] MACRO 1: 1 + adapter, which lengthens the system, there were no special problems.

        • Oleg

          Well, if so! I just saw metal rings of an e-mount bayonet on sale on Aliexpress, I just don’t remember with or without petals. I also thought, who needs them, does Sony seem to be sound? Maybe for such cases?

  • Victor

    My first more or less professional camera, which, unfortunately or fortunately, quickly went to the shelf. There are still many advantages, but they all overlap with one fatty flaw: the matrix collects dust, and there is no cleaning system. After each lens change, it is completely dusty, it is almost impossible to shoot on those glasses that require clamping the aperture for a sharp picture. As a result, the replacement turns into such a non-quick ritual: I hooked up the lenses, made a frame of the sky in the closed, remembered where the dust particles, wiped them with a little lenspen, hooked back, checked again. If you are lucky and everything turned out in one go, then you can shoot further.

    Apparently, the most reasonable way to use the A3000 / A3500 is to hang some of the 18-200 on it and leave it that way. True, they can pump dust through the cracks ...

    • Roman

      What are you talking about grip, about dust particles, these are the characteristics that nobody needs. Did you see the color, saw the color? This plasticity of the green channel, these legible lights in red, this beautiful rendering and detailing of shadows in blue! And this bend of the gamma curve! * experiencing an orgasm for the first time in the last two years *

    • Jankowsky

      About the dust on the matrix is ​​complete nonsense. This is where, where and how it is necessary, in war or in the desert to change lenses in the rain in order to crawl the matrix every time with a lenspen? I’ve changed lenses 1000 times, here from three E cameras, and it is extremely rare for dust particles to be blown there by a pear. I generally advise you to forget about Lenspen, he scratches the matrix for the nefig!

      • Roman

        If you take less DIVINE COLOR and use the camera more for real shooting such as the beach, desert, dusty attic, basement, construction - where texture is important, where you need to shoot the play of light in dust, then any camera picks up dust quickly enough. And a camera without ultrasonic cleaning is so special. And the dust becomes especially visible on the clamped hole (well, and in macro mode).

      • Roman

        And by the way, LensPen also makes pencils for cleaning matrices. Well, they are also called mops. Somehow it’s called differently from them, SensorClean or Clear, but they do it too.

  • Oleg

    Important: the camera uses plastic bayonet petals. Only the outer bayonet ring is metallic. In fact, the lens on the camera is fixed using these petals, and therefore we can assume that the a3500 mount is still plastic.
    I looked, the Sony A37 has a similar mount on the bayonet - a metal ring and plastic petals.

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