Hi Camera Lovers 👋 If you buy a camera through our referral links, you support our site at no cost to you 😉 Full info here.

Sony Alpha 500 Specs and Scores

Storage & Battery
Sony Alpha 500
Alpha 500
Refers to the year this camera was officially made available for sale.
Announcement Date
Refers to the date the manufacturer publicly announced the upcoming release and general specs of this camera.
August 27, 2009
Camera Type
Camera Size
Camera Weight

The Sony Alpha 500 receives a score of 45/100 for its general specifications. Launched in 2009 with a price of $699, this DSLR camera measures 137 x 104 x 84mm and weighs 630g or 1.39lbs. Considering the advancements in camera technology over the last decade, the Alpha 500’s specifications may not be as competitive in today’s market. However, for those seeking a budget-friendly option with decent specifications, this camera could still be a suitable choice.

Sony Alpha 500 Overview and Optics

The Sony Alpha 500 receives a score of 50/100 for its optics. This camera features a 12.3 megapixel APS-C CMOS sensor, which provides decent image quality. However, in today’s market, many cameras offer higher megapixel counts, resulting in more detailed images. The Alpha 500’s shooting speed of 5 frames per second is average, with many competitors offering faster speeds. The Bionz processor, while functional, is not the latest in technology.

The DXOMARK score of 64 for the Sony Alpha 500’s sensor places it in the lower range compared to current cameras. The Sony Alpha DT lens mount allows for a variety of lenses, but the camera’s image stabilization feature is a plus. With a 3:2 aspect ratio, the camera produces standard images, but it may not be suitable for those seeking advanced specifications or the highest image quality.

Considering these factors, the Sony Alpha 500’s optics are adequate but not exceptional in the current market. Its features may be suitable for beginner photographers, but advanced users may find it lacking compared to newer models with more advanced specifications.

The higher the number of megapixels, the more detail the cameras sensor can capture.
12.3 MP
Image Resolution
Image resolution is measured in pixels and megapixels, width by height. The higher the number, the higher its resolution.
4272 x 2848 px
Sensor Type
The camera sensor captures light and records the image. Sensors vary in physical size, the number of pixels, and quality.
Sensor Size
The sensor size contributes to the overall quality as well as the dynamic and tonal range a camera can capture. As a rule of thumb, the more surface there is to read the light, the more information it will capture.
15.6 x 23.5 mm
Sensor Format
Refers to the most commonly used sensor sizes.
Frame Rate
The number of sequential frames per second the camera can write to the memory card when shooting in burst or continuous mode.
5 fps
Lens Mount
The lens mount will tell you what type of lens range you can fit onto the camera body. Often the same camera company will have different lens ranges for different cameras.
Sony Alpha DT
Image Processor
The image processor in the camera converts the information collected on the sensor for digital storage on the memory card.
Aspect Ratio
The aspect ratio refers to the proportional difference between width and height. The most popular aspect ratios are 3:2 and 4:3.
Minimum ISO (Native)
Refers to the lowest native (or 'base') ISO setting. Lower ISO are less sensitive to light but make a cleaner image.
Maximum ISO (Native)
Refers to the highest native (or 'base') ISO setting. Higher ISO is necessary for low-light situations or night photography, but higher ISOs often introduce grain or noise.
Minimum ISO (Expanded)
Expanded (or extended) ISO is a digitally enhanced feature available on some cameras. It allows you to push beyond the native ISO range if necessary.
Maximum ISO (Expanded)
Expanded (or extended) ISO is a digitally enhanced feature available on some cameras. It allows you to push beyond the native ISO range if necessary.
Minimum Shutter Speed
The minimum shutter speed will tell you the longest exposure your camera can take without using an external accessory.
30 s
Maximum Shutter Speed
The maximum shutter speed tells you the length inside 1 second the camera will capture. These can sometimes be extended with accessories such as extra external batteries.
1/ 4000 s
Autofocus Points
Autofocus points show where the camera is focusing graphically as squares or brackets in Live View or on an electronic viewfinder. These points are also used for light meter readings.
In-body Stabilization
In-body Stabilization means the camera has a certain technology embedded that counteracts camera shake.
Viewfinder Type
The viewfinder type is either electronic or optical. Electronic viewfinders will have a small screen in the viewfinder. Optical viewfinders will use prisms and mirrors to look through the lens.
Optical (pentamirror)

Sony Alpha 500 Video Performance

The Sony Alpha 500 lacks video capabilities. Unlike many cameras, it cannot record videos. This camera focuses solely on photography.

Indicates if this camera is capable of recording video.
Time-Lapse Built In
A built in time-lapse mode will allow continuous shooting throughout a prolonged period of time to be compressed into a sped up video.

Sony Alpha 500 Features and Benefits

The Sony Alpha 500 scores 36/100 in terms of features. With a screen size of 3 inches and a resolution of 230,000 dots, the display is decent but not exceptional. The lack of touchscreen functionality may disappoint some users, but the flip screen feature is a useful addition for those who need flexibility in shooting angles.

In today’s competitive market, the absence of GPS, WiFi, and Bluetooth capabilities in the Alpha 500 is a significant drawback. Many modern cameras now include these features as standard, offering greater connectivity and convenience for users.

The Sony Alpha 500, while offering some useful features, falls short in comparison to other cameras in the market. The lack of connectivity options and a lower screen resolution make it a less versatile choice for photographers seeking up-to-date technology.

Built-in Flash
A built-in flash will often be positioned right above the lens. This will automatically pop up when you activate it.
External Flash
External flashes are often connected through a hot shoe at the top of a camera, or a cable at the side of the camera.
GPS features in a camera will include location metadata to each of your photographs.
Weather Sealing
Weather sealing capabilities will give you more confidence when shooting in unfavourable conditions.
Screen Type
Touch Screen
Touchscreen allows you to change camera settings and access menus with a swipe of your finger, instead of using buttons.
Screen Size
Screen Resolution
Screen dots indicate the resolution of the LCD screen by including each sub pixel.
230,000 dots
Flip Screen
A flip screen (or articulating screen) is a second screen which can flip out from the side or top of the camera. This rotating screen allows you more freedom to take photos at different angles.
Live View
Live View feature allows you to see a continuous live video of what is being seen through your lens.
Bluetooth capabilities allow you wireless control of your camera with other external devices.

Sony Alpha 500 Storage and Battery

The Sony Alpha 500 received a storage and battery score of 27/100. This camera offers a single memory card slot, compatible with SD/SDHC and Memory Stick Pro Duo/Pro-HG Duo cards. Its battery life lasts for 520 shots and utilizes an NP-FM500H battery type. Unfortunately, USB charging is not available for this model.

Compared to other cameras in the market, the Sony Alpha 500’s storage and battery specifications are less impressive. The limited memory card compatibility and absence of USB charging may not meet the expectations of modern users. Thus, the Sony Alpha 500 may not be the top choice for those prioritizing storage and battery capabilities.

Storage and Battery
Storage and Battery
Memory Card
SD / SDHC, Memory Stick Pro Duo / Pro-HG Duo
Dual Memory Card Slots
Battery Type
Battery Life
Approximately how long this cameras battery will last measured by how many photographs you will be able to take.
520 shots
USB Charging
Sensor scores tested by DXOMARK
Overall Score
DXOMARK overall sensor score.
Portrait (Color Depth)
As described by DXOMARK 'The Portrait score in our camera sensor reviews defines color depth performance and its unit is a number of bits. A color depth of 22 bits is excellent; differences below 1 bit are barely noticeable.'
21.8 bits
Landscape (Dynamic Range)
As described by DXOMARK 'The Landscape score in our camera sensor tests defines the maximum dynamic range of the camera sensor and its unit is an exposure value (EV). A value of 12 EV is excellent with differences below 0.5 EV usually not noticeable.'
11.6 EVs
Sports (Low-Light ISO)
Described by DXOMARK as 'The maximal value of ISO sensitivity needed to reach a given value of Signal-to-Noise Ratio (SNR). The greater the value, the better'
User Scores
B&H photo video
Spotted a mistake with these camera specs? Please let us know so we can update it!