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21 reviews | 3.2 out of 5
We bought this hoping to be able to use it as a recorder and a camera. As a recorder, it works great. The zoom is awesome. The internal memory ensures ample memory. The battery lasts a long time before needing recharged. The touch screen is pretty handy. It's easy to use. I'm still tinkering w/ the computer program that comes with it that allows you to edit your recordings, but what I've been able to figure out thus far...it's neat. However, when using it in the camera feature, the pictures are very, very grainy. This was so disappointing because I really like the rest of the product. Honestly, the pictures are just so poor they just aren't usable. All this to say, if you are looking for a great digital recorder...you won't be disappointed. If you were hoping to utilize it as a camera as well.....this is NOT the product for you.
i purchased this camera after searching several stores in my area. this seemed to be the better camera for my money. i have taken several videos with it that have turned out pretty good. quality depends on the lighting conditions and things like that but thats any camera. i ALMOST returned this camera. here is the reason why... i loaded the videos onto my pc which without the sony software is a pain. if you just insert the memory card or camera into the pc to import the files they are hidden in an off the wall titled folder and are slightly hard to find. i finally got them loaded and they wouldnt play!!! i contact sony. the format is MPEG-2 for the videos. basically they told me windows media player doesnt support this format (they dont have the codec required) and that i HAD to use THEIR software to import or play the videos. i couldnt believe that! i said well then whats the point of buying a camera to shoot videos if you cant send them to your family because they need special software just to view it. seems like a valid point right? he didnt have any answer. i asked how to get the codecs for media player and he said to contact microsoft for them. so i said ok ill do that. he then tells me that its recommended i use THEIR software again. again REALLY? so i go to microsofts page. well if you dont have windows vista home premium or a windows 7 pc the MPEG-2 format isnt supported. you have to purchase an add on like power dvd or windvd ect... price ranging from 14-99 dollars!!! luckily i had one of these titles that i received free with another pc so i loaded it. videos played perfectly with windows media player after installing power dvd. i was going to return it because at first it seemed to be a huge hassel just to load and play back any video i recorded and sending to family was going to be just as difficult. i didnt return the camera because after loading power dvd i was able to open and edit the files on my pc without needing the sony software. once you figure out where the files are hidden its pretty easy to get them off the memory card/internal memory.i know the few family and friends i will be sending it to have the required programs to view it as well. so for me it eliminated the hassel. if your not real tech savy id pass on this camera but if you read all that and went no problem then by all means buy it! i actually love it after getting the playback issues resolved.
I originally was going to buy a Flip camera but saw this one at the store & really liked its features. I liked the zoom options & the steady feature so I can take it on hikes to video my dogs having a good time in the woods. The feature I really like, though, is the on board USB port. Very handy. It's easy to download videos to my computer as well as the options to delete the scenes on the camera after downloading. Overall, I love this camera!
THE SIZE IS GREAT, EASY TO HOLD AN CARRY. THE PICTURE QUALITY WAS VERY GOOD, SO MUCH FOR THE GOOD POINTS. I WAS NOT HAPPY WITH THE VIEWING SCREEN IN BRIGHT SUNLIGHT. NO MATTER HOW YOU TILTED IT YOU CAN't SEE WHAT YOUR FILMING. I KNOW THAT'S THE THING NOWDAYS WITH PHONES AND CAMERAS. I WISH SONY WOULD HAVE PUT A PEEP WINDOW ON THE CAMCORDER ALSO SO YOU CAN REALLY SEE WHAT YOU'RE LOOKING AT. THE CAMCORDER IS SLOW TO REFOCUS WHEN YOU MOVE FROM ONE SCENE TO ANOTHER. ONE THING TO KEEP IN MIND, IF YOU ARE USING THE ZOOM ON ONE SHOT AN STOP FILMING AN START TO FILM AGAIN ON A CLOSER SUBJECT THE CAMERA IS STILL ON ZOOM. AS LONG AS YOU REMEMBER TO CHANGE IT BACK YOU WILL BE OK. I GUESS I THOUGHT IT WOULD RESET IT SELF. MOVING FROM SITE TO SITE IT WAS EASY TO FORGET TO MAKE THE CHANGE FOR THE ZOOM. SPEAKING OF THE 70X ZOOM , YOU REALLY NEED A TRIPOD IF YOU GO THE MAX. I BOUGHT A SMALL 6 INCH TRIPOD WHICH ALSO WORKED LIKE A HANDLE. THAT PROVED TO BE HELPFUL.
I purchased this to replace a High-8 Hitachi because I was having difficulty transferring videos of soccer games direct to DVD. The transfer is still not instantaneous, but much quicker than transferring to VHS tapes! The camcorder is small, lightweight, easy to use, and packed with features. I find a neck/chest mounted monopole better than a tripod for this unit because it is so light, and the view screen is closer to my eyes. This Camcorder has a FAST zoom which is good for following sports action, but I've had some trouble because the zoom control is exactly backwards from the Hitachi. My bad I think, not the camera's. The only other problem is the very busy and sometimes obscure menu grouping. Color and detail are good for either SP or HD recording and there appears to be ample recording space on the internal memory. The removable card will allow you too increase that substantially, or keep photos separate from the internal memory. The only other problem is that Wal-Mart doesn't carry replacement batteries. I wound up having to buy them on e-Bay which left me tied to a power cord for several weeks to ensure not running out of battery until they arrived. The battery supplied will last about 40 to 50 minutes with heavy zooming. I purchased 2 larger batteries with chargers so I don't have to have the camera plugged in to charge.
The features are great on this camcorder and you have to play with it to get it set the way you want. Instructions not that great. The only reason I returned this was due to the poor video when you play it back. Objects are blurry and doesn't focus quick enough.
easy to use
I have seen better results from $20 cameras you can find in the toy section. I took It back.
I have been using this camera for the past year twice a month excellent camera.
Great price & great product - works perfectly
Needed to replace my 10 year old Sony Mini DV camcorder and wanted to stay with standard definition - Took this and the Panasonic SDRT70 home for a side by side comparison. I filmed a 10 minute clip on each camera that included interior shots for low light filming and exterior shots following my kids on their scooters for zooming and panning. Even though their price is only $10 apart the difference in image quality played back on my TV was like night and day. My old camera cost over $1,000 and this new one has comparable video quality for less than $300. All of the other added functions make this camera a steal. My wife uploaded a clip straight to Facebook and I have burned video straight onto DVD's as well as backing the files up on my computer.
Best pictures and video I have taken. Pictures are clear and vibrant. Would recommend this camcorder to everyone
I am very impressed with this camera except when trying to see what I'm filming in bright sunlight. Unfortunately the screen reflects my own face back at me rather than what I'm filming. Must be a way around that ... some non-reflective coating or something? Other than that, zoom is fantastic, video is crisp and clear, sound is good.
Video portion of the camera works fine, and features are handy to use, but photos taken by the camera were absolutely terrible. Bad enough that I thought to myself, what's the point of even putting a camera feature in there? Very grainy, poor light, etc. I'm returning this product to the store.
Bought camera approximately two weeks ago. It replaces a sony cam we bought in 2000 that would have cost more than a new one to fix the prob. Person at Sony told me that. Video quality is good. Really just used it for an extended time on 8/31/12, really first thing I have had to video since I got it & it took good video. Have seen people said low video quality but I think like any camera, it depends on the lighting conditions. As far as the pic quality, I'll reserve judgement on that for now. Pics I took so far are grainy but the light conditions were not good so that may be why. People have to understand one thing, these cameras today don't have tapes in them anymore. They are hard drive and memory card system and probably any of them won't take the best video/pics. With tapes they did take good video/pics. Times have changed and this is what there is now, people may not like it, but it is what it is.
THIS IS A GREAT CAMERA FOR VIDEO . . BUT SAME AS BELOW . . THE PICTURE CAPTURE QUALITY IS VERY GRAINY . . THAT'S WHERE IT WAS DISAPPOINTING BECAUSE I WANTED A CAMCORDER THAT COULD DO BOTH . . ALL THOUGH SONY DOES MAKE EXCELLENT ELECTRONICS . . I WAS NOT HAPPY WITH THIS ONE . . I AM NOW SELLING IT ON CRAIGSLIST TO GET MY MONEY BACK AND TO BUY A NEWER ONE . . WITH BOTH GREAT VIDEO AND PICTURE CAPTURE . . THE VIDEO IS GREAT BUT NOT SO GREAT WITH JUST PICTURES . .
The digital focus is useless and the manual focus is not really manual also the night vision is very poor but besides that everything else is OK. Overall though I am not impressed with it.
I'm disappointed with the video quality. I've been using a Flip video which has poor sound but good video. This camera gives me just the opposite. It makes no sense at all that I should pay nearly double the money and get poorer video resolution on a video camera, but that’s what I got with the Sony DCR-SX85. Bought it today and definitely taking it back to the store tomorrow. I really had big hopes for this camera. Sony…If you’re listening…I’d like to suggest that you put the Flip video system into the Sony DCR-SX85 and you’ll have a way better camera.
The video is blurry and taking pictures with it are such a low grade quality complete waste of money
I researched video cameras before purchasing this model and I thought this would be perfect for me. My mother-in-law has an older Sony Handycam and it takes amazing pictures and video. This model however is awful. Do not waste your time or money. I'm returning mine and buying something else. I kept thinking it was a setting that I hadn't found. I read the manual repeatedly and played with the settings. No such luck. This is just not a good product. Extremely grainy no matter what, both video and pictures are grainy. The quality looks like something I would have expected in the 1980's. This is ridiculous for 2011.