The A900 remains a good buy but unfortunately for Sony there are other alternatives in the ball park for less (Nikon's D700 and Canon's new 5D MkII for example). And even though the Nikon pixel count limits the ultimate print size for pixel peepers and the Canon doesn't have the weather sealing NEITHER camera has the fabulous VF or the in-camera stabilization that the Sony has. Still I imagine the competition might have been a bit too disappointing for Sony. All because the people wanting these other rocks want them because they see so many 'Pro's' using them at weddings and press conferences. (Having just returned from a honeymoon in Vancouver I can attest to that as it seemed like people EVERYWHERE were using FF Nikon and Canon DSLRS!).
Interestingly I wonder if the under $2k A850 had any impact. I thought it was a bold move that I thought would surely would have tipped the scales a little in Sony's favor. But maybe not. Consumers who just do a cursory review of various DSLRs reading the words "unacceptable noise at ISO's above 400' who would easily be wowed by the superb images of the Sony machines may have gravitated toward the cameras with higher ISO performance (even though in most cases I suspect users will shoot at ISO 400 and under ANYWAY).
Still, Sony did announce a FF Zeiss 24mm f2 which from the initial images I've seen in dpreview are quite impressive. So I really wonder whether Sony will ditch their FF DSLRs or whether something else may be up. (Even with Beta Max that failed as a consumer product in the face of VHS Sony found an even greater market with the professionals who used NOTHING but Sony in their editorials suites giving them a virtual LOCK in that market providing Sony with an impressive profit center for DECADES). And if past behavior is any predictor of future events it seems like they don't just drop out of a market when maybe their initial projections weren't met. Sony has also made heavy investments in Konica and Minolta and a have a long-standing relationship, obcviously, with Zeiss that doesn't appear to be fading so I can't see them throwing in the towel THAT easily.)
Regarding the sensor I'm also surprised that with all of Sony's development and major announcements of their backlit sensor with it's claimed lower noise which certainly made me speculate if whether a FF version would appear in a future A900 and A850 MK II that such an announcement would have any basis. Plus, let's be honest, profits is profits. When you have customers buying your sensors why would you cut them off? UNLESS, there's a new player that may have wowed Nikon. I'd place my bet on Samsung who's been itching to get some of Sony's business.
If that were the case and now Samsung is making chips that Nikon prefers, I could see Sony making an announcement that spurred this thread. But I don't know really.
And while Sony in the pursuit of a source for FF sensors (should they continue to support--and bean counters be damned--this wonderful almost Leica-like niche they've carved out) may not go with Samsung (honestly when you already have the fabrication equipment how hard is it to continue manufacturing slightly larger chips than APSC?) I could see a scenario where they MAY go with Panasonic who just announced a patent for their OWN backlit Sensor. But one that follows the FOVEON approach of multiple layers of pixel sites stacked on one another. THAT might be something that could be up their sleeves--a development that has really put my imagination into overdrive.
I know I've rambled and I'm sorry. Suffice to say, I wouldn't count Sony out of the FF biz yet. And we may be in for some even MORE exciting times ahead. So don't go putting your Zeiss optics on Ebay just quite yet.