Adjusting those controls is hard
We were impressed by the huge, 70x optical zoom on the SDR-S26, but the camcorder failed to deliver the goods when it came to video performance. In low light, the camcorder simply didn't produce a pleasant image, and in bright light it measured the worst sharpness scores of all the standard definition camcorders we tested this year.
In addition to its 70x optical zoom, we were also surprised by the amount of manual controls included on the SDR-S26.
When shooting at normal magnifications, the Sony DCR-SX60 does a pretty good job of keeping footage smooth and steady, despite the lack of an optical image stabiliser.
The Sony DCR-SX60 is an attractive looking standard-definition camcorder that does a reasonable job in the imaging stakes. That said, there are better SD options on the market that cost around the same price.
The ultra-compact DCR-SX60 Handycam® camcorder. Conveniently flexible, it can record video to 16GB of embedded memory or removable Memory Stick Duo™ or Memory Stick PRO Duo™ media. A professional-quality Carl Zeiss® Vario-Tessar® lens captures crisp, high-resolution images and its 60x optical zoom brings the action up close and personal.The DCR-SX60 features a professional-quality Carl Zeiss® Vario-Tessar® lens designed specifically for compact camcorders.
A quality product at a reasonable price
The Sony HDR-HC9 camcorder is a rare find: it's a high-definition camera that uses tapes, a preferable option for people who believe that tapes always deliver superior video product compared to SD and hard disc formats. While that opinion may be disputed, there is no doubt this camera delivers a quality product at a reasonable price.
Mediocre video performance
The Sony DCR-SR40 is a camcorder that offers mediocre video performance, only basic features, and no way of adding accessories. The SR40 is the epitome of a bare-bones camcorder. As per the company's hallmark, all Sonys are easy to use, but this entry-level offering one-ups even its Handycam relatives. The recording media is integrated into the body, and there are only a few external buttons and controls making this perhaps the most idiot-proof camcorder ever.
Great camcorder for electronic news gathering and independent filmmaking alike
The lofty price of the HVR-Z7E will put it out of the reach of all but the most serious videomakers. Corporate and events cameramen will long for it, but may struggle to justify the expense. Nevertheless, it points the way forward for professional camcorders, particularly now Panasonic has announced that more models using AVCHD and SD will be arriving later in 2008.
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Reviews and Ratings for Mini DV Recording Format Camcorders from ReviewGist