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Sony Alpha 700 | Digital Camera Review | Storage and Energy
The Sony Alpha 700 digital SLR camera has been equipped with a dual card slot. Besides the widely available CompactFlash memory card, the Memory Stick Duo card can be used also. The Memory Stick Duo card is supported to a maximum storage capacity of 8GB while the CompactFlash card is currently available with a capacity of 16GB. The manual is not clear about support of a maximum storage capacity of CF cards, but during the review I used the SanDisk Extreme III CompactFlash 16GB without a problem.
Sony Alpha 700 | Digital Camera Sony Alpha 700 | Digital Camera
Sony A700 - MS PRO-HG card & CompactFlash card with UDMA
If you want to use the speed of data transfer on the Sony DSLR-A700 to the fullest, you will have to purchase a fast memory card. The camera supports the MS PRO-HG high speed cards and the fast CompactFlash cards with UDMA (Ultra Direct Memory Access support. SanDisk is a good example of a manufacturer of such memory cards that not only offer speed but also stability. This is quite an important fact to be aware of in this world where digital storage is becoming more and more common. In addition to using the Extreme III CF card during testing I used the latest SanDisk Extreme IV Ducati CompactFlash in combination with the Sony Alpha 700. And this makes the fastest combination you can get with the new Alpha 700 D-SLR.

Sony DSLR-A700 - Storage capacity of 4GB advised
Using the high resolution of 12 Megapixels and file formats in RAW, eventually mixed with JPEG, deliver a rather large file format. Photographing in RAW will deliver files of around 18MB, cRAW (Sony's latest RAW format) still delivers more than 12MB but a RAW+JPEG setting gives you a file of more than 22MB. The need of investing in a large capacity memory card may be clear! Considering some hundred pictures in the highest quality needs more than 2GB storage capacity. Therefore I would advise a storage capacity of 4GB.

Considering 4GB storage capacity:
12 Megapixels - 3:2 - RAW - 203 pictures
12 Megapixels - 3:2 - cRAW - 299 pictures
12 Megapixels - 3:2 - RAW+JPEG - 156 pictures
12 Megapixels - 3:2 - cRAW+JPEG - 208 pictures
12 Megapixels - 3:2 - JPEG Extra Fine - 365 pictures
12 Megapixels - 3:2 - JPEG Fine - 682 pictures
12 Megapixels - 3:2 - Standard - 1001 pictures
10 Megapixels - 16:9 - RAW - 203 pictures
10 Megapixels - 16:9 - cRAW - 299 pictures
10 Megapixels - 16:9 - RAW+JPEG - 161 pictures
10 Megapixels - 16:9 - cRAW+JPEG - 217 pictures
10 Megapixels - 16:9 - JPEG Extra Fine - 428 pictures
10 Megapixels - 16:9 - JPEG Fine - 788 pictures
10 Megapixels - 16:9 - JPEG Standard - 1142 pictures
6.4 Megapixels - 3:2 - RAW+JPEG - 172 pictures
6.4 Megapixels - 3:2 - cRAW+JPEG - 236 pictures
6.4 Megapixels - 3:2 - JPEG Extra Fine - 629 pictures
6.4 Megapixels - 3:2 - JPEG Fine - 1121 pictures
6.4 Megapixels - 3:2 - Standard - 1567 pictures
5.4 Megapixels - 16:9 - RAW+JPEG - 175 pictures
5.4 Megapixels - 16:9 - cRAW+JPEG - 242 pictures
5.4 Megapixels - 16:9 - JPEG Extra Fine - 727 pictures
5.4 Megapixels - 16:9 - JPEG Fine - 1273 pictures
5.4 Megapixels - 16:9 - Standard - 1746 pictures
3 Megapixels - 3:2 - RAW+JPEG - 182 pictures
3 Megapixels - 3:2 - cRAW+JPEG - 256 pictures
3 Megapixels - 3:2 - JPEG Extra Fine - 1044 pictures
3 Megapixels - 3:2 - JPEG Fine - 1772 pictures
3 Megapixels - 3:2 - Standard - 2307 pictures
2.6 Megapixels - 16:9 - RAW+JPEG - 184 pictures
2.6 Megapixels - 16:9 - cRAW+JPEG - 260 pictures
2.6 Megapixels - 16:9 - JPEG Extra Fine - 1198 pictures
2.6 Megapixels - 16:9 - JPEG Fine - 1972 pictures
2.6 Megapixels - 16:9 - Standard - 2547 pictures
Sony Alpha A700 - Buffer & Image processing
The Sony Alpha 700 does well as far as buffer and image processing is concerned. Did the Alpha 100 perform well; the Sony A700 does even better. Not only the resolution has improved but also the frame speed improved from 3 to 5 frames per second which will please the action photographer. You will experience the difference in speed when using a fast memory card as the Sony Alpha 700 has to use the buffer. When using a fast card, in my case the SanDisk Extreme IV CF Ducati card, a speed gain of 20 to 25% is reached during the making of RAW test images and waiting for them to be written from the buffer to the card. It becomes a different thing when a standard card is used for taking RAW pictures sequentially. The delay is around 300% before the buffer is emptied.

Sony A700 - USB 2.0 Hi-Speed interface
The pictures can be transferred directly from the Sony A700 DSLR camera to a computer or notebook via the fast USB 2.0 Hi-Speed interface. This fast connection in combination with a fast memory card such as the SanDisk Extreme IV make sure you will not find a bottleneck in your work environment. For those among us who are reluctant to use the Sony A700 for data transfer, they can use a so-called card reader. This device should not lack in a digital work environment and makes data transfer considerably more pleasant. The San Disk USB 2.0 Hi-Speed Extreme card reader is currently the fastest (besides FireWire) and is able to transfer data with a maximum speed up to 20MB per second.

Sony SLR camera - Lithium-Ion NP-FM500H battery
The Sony DSLR-A700 uses a Lithium-Ion battery with a capacity of 7.2V 11.8Wh. The Sony NP-FM500H offers some 650 pictures in an ideal atmosphere and with certain settings. Ideal for example is a surrounding temperature of 25˚C. In addition the camera is set to the Fine quality and the focus function set to Automatic AF. Besides that every 30 seconds a picture is taken with the flash firing at every second picture and the camera is turned off and on again every ten pictures. A situation deviating from the aforementioned one will come up with different results like a different amount of pictures that can be taken with a fully loaded battery. Fully recharging the battery takes around 235 minutes.
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