To distinguish itself from other starter DSLRs, the 16-megapixel a57 has two tricks. The first is hardware-based – a dedicated autofocus sensor that provides full autofocus during both still and video shooting. The other, called Auto Portrait Framing, is software-based. It automatically crops the picture using the "rule of thirds," meaning it sticks the subject off-center and trims accordingly. It's a gimmicky but ingenious crash course in shot composition. [$700; store.sony.com]
The 2014 Adventure Issue
From Iceland's Highway 1 to Utah's Canyonlands, an epic itinerary for modern explorers.
Plus: Building a Bigger Action Hero
ON NEWSSTANDS NOW
Duke Lacrosse and the Fog of Scandal
How Thailand's Most Notorious Prison Became a Fight Club
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