updated 04:30 pm EDT, Fri June 20, 2008
Sony intros Alpha flash
Sony yesterday announced it added a new accessory for its line of Alpha digital SLR cameras, with the HVL-F58AM external flash unit. The top-of-the-line flash replaces the HVL-F56AM model, and features Sony's Quick Shift Bounce system, a flash head that can pivot 90 degrees on a horizontal axis. The guide number is 58 at 105mm and ISO 100.
Other improvements compared to its predecessor include a quiet recycle in as quickly as five seconds, representing more than a 50 percent improvement, as well as a larger LCD screen. Like the old model, wireless control is part of the HVL-F58AM's CV, providing users with more lighting options, especially when using zoom lenses. The units can also control the ratio of lighting from up to three other portable flash units.
Sony's newest is also designed to make photographers' work easier, thanks to its automatic zoom control that optimizes angles for APS-C or 35mm full frame sensors. It also helps the cameras' white balance mode make more accurate readings with a WB compensation system. High speed synchronization supports shutter speeds as fast as 1/4000th of a second, and Advanced Distance Integration flash metering is integrated.
A mini-stand for when the flash is used as a satellite is included. The HVL-F58AM flash will be available this September, priced at nearly $500.