Capturing Stunning Photos with the Sony Alpha DSLR-A380: A Comprehensive Review

This blog post is a detailed review of the Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 camera, written to provide readers with an in-depth understanding of its features and performance. It includes tips on how to improve photography skills and take amazing photos with this impressive camera.

Written by Victor Chan | Updated: Mon May 01 2023

Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 article cover photo

Key Features

Aug 24 2009


14 megapixels


Sensor TypeAPS-C

Other similar cameras

Overview of the Alpha DSLR-A380

If you are in the market for a high-quality camera with great performance and advanced features, the Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 is definitely worth considering. This camera has been around for a while, but it is still one of the best choices for anyone looking to take their photography to the next level. In this review, we will discuss its features and benefits, and why it is still a popular option for both amateur and professional photographers. Let's dive in!

Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 Pros and Cons

Now, we will look more closely at our review of the Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 camera. We will see what it can do and compare it to other cameras like it. We will tell you what's good about it and what's not so good. This way, you'll know if it's the camera for you!


High-resolution images
Fast autofocus
Wide range of compatible lenses
Excellent low light performance
Easy to use
Vari-angle LCD screen
Good battery life
Built-in image stabilization
High-speed burst mode


Slow frame rate
No video recording
Limited ISO range
Limited dynamic range compared to competitors
No built-in Wi-Fi or GPS
LCD screen has low resolution
Heavy and bulky
Limited AF points compared to competitors

Build and Construction

Body and dimensions

Sony Alpha DSLR-A380

Weather sealed
Dimensions128 x 97 x 71mm

Weather Sealing

The Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 is not sealed against water and dust, so it's important to be careful when using it in such conditions. If you often shoot in environments with water or dust, it's recommended to check out another camera with weather sealing.

Design and Handling

Main design features

View FinderOptical (pentamirror)
Screen TypeTilting
Screen Resolution230k dots
Body typeCompact SLR

Suitable for:

PhotographyAbove Avg.
VideographyAbove Avg.
TravelAbove Avg.

LCD Screen

This camera has a tilting 2.70" screen, with a display resolution of 230k dots. This makes the Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 not as suitable for those looking for a vlogging camera as you cannot view yourself while shooting selfies easily. Unfortunately, the camera does not have a touch screen, which may make it less user-friendly.


Alpha DSLR-A380 includes a optical (pentamirror) viewfinder with no electronic viewfinder of resolution with a coverage of 95% and a magnification of 0.49x. This feature enhances the camera's suitability for outdoor photography in bright conditions.

Image Quality

Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 has a 14MP sized CCD sensor. You can shoot at maximum resolution of 14 pixels. Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 has a native ISO range of 100 - 3200 which can be boosted to null - null. It can also save files in RAW format which gives you a wider room for post processing.

Key Features

Aug 24 2009


100 - 3200

ISO Range

Extended ISOnull - null
Max resolution4592 x 3056 pixels

DXO Sensor Scores


67 / 102

Color Depth

22.6 / 26.5

Dynamic Range

11.8 / 14.8

Low Light ISO

614 / 4505

DXO mark sensor scores

The DXOmark rankings indicate that the Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 camera has above average color depth performance, which refers to the number of colors the sensor can distinguish. Additionally, its dynamic range is also average, allowing it to retain low amounts of details in both bright and dark areas of a scene. The camera's low light ISO performance is poor, which is an important factor to consider if you plan to use it in dimly lit indoor environments or at night. Overall the image quality of the Alpha DSLR-A380 is average

Crop Factor

Camera crop factor (or focal length multiplier) refers to how a camera's sensor size affects the apparent field of view of a lens. Crop factor is determined by comparing the size of a camera's sensor to that of a full-frame sensor, which is a standard reference size for camera sensors.

Size comparison

Medium FormatFull FrameAPS-C (Sony, Nikon)

Crop factor calculator

Crop factor


Full frame equivalent


This camera: APS-C



Connectivity, storage, battery

StorageSD/ SDHC, Memory Stick Pro Duo
Battery Life500 shots
Battery ModelNP-FH50
Wireless Connectivity


The Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 supports SD/ SDHC, Memory Stick Pro Duo with 1 slots for storage. This may suffice for everyday use. However, for professional applications such as wedding photography, it is not recommended as a memory card malfunction could lead to the loss of all footage.


The Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 uses the NP-FH50 model of battery pack. This is rated for 500 shots shots which is high. If you intend to take photos or record videos for an extended period, it might be a good idea to bring along additional batteries.

Photography Features


The Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 has built in flash which is great for event photography and in low light situations. It also offers a flash shoe that allows you to attach external flashes. This provides more versatility in your lighting choices.


The Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 boasts a maximum mechanical shutter speed of 1/4000s, which is ideal for shooting fast-moving subjects in bright environments, such as in sports photography. Faster shutter speeds enable you to freeze the action and capture every detail, making it easier to get the perfect shot.

With a continuous mechanical shutter speed of n/a or an electronic shutter speed of n/a, this camera is not capable of capturing the perfect moment more easily, making it not as suited for wedding, sports, and wildlife photography. Higher shutter speeds make it easier to capture fast-paced action, ensuring that you never miss the perfect shot.


The Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 includes phase detection autofocus (AF), with 9 number of focus points.

While contrast detection is generally more accurate and precise, phase detection autofocus is faster and more effective in most situations, particularly when photographing moving subjects.

Phase detection autofocus works by dividing the incoming light into pairs and then analyzing how they intersect on the camera's sensor. This method allows the camera to determine not only if a subject is in focus but also the direction and distance needed to adjust the focus to achieve perfect sharpness.

On the other hand, contrast detection autofocus works by analyzing the contrast of an image and adjusting the focus until the highest contrast is detected. While this method is very accurate, it can be slow, especially in low light conditions or when photographing moving subjects.

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What is the sensor size of the Sony Alpha DSLR-A380?

The Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 features a CCD sensor

Is the Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 weather sealed?

No the Alpha DSLR-A380 does not have weather sealing.

When was the Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 announced?

The Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 was announced on Aug 24 2009

Does the Sony Alpha DSLR-A380 have in-body image stabilization?

Yes the Alpha DSLR-A380 does have in-body image stabilization that can compensate for camera shake, making it easier to shoot handheld in low light conditions.

What is the ISO range of the Sony Alpha DSLR-A380?

The Alpha DSLR-A380 has a native ISO range of 100-3200, which can be expanded to ISO null-null for even greater sensitivity in low light conditions.

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