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Sony hard disk camcorders

Ilse Jurrien
CES report
Monday 7th, January 2008
Posted by: Ilse Jurrien

Sony is debuting four hard drive Handycam camcorders with sleek bodies and robust capacities to capture life’s longer moments. Generally, most of the models are more compact than last year’s models. The 60GB DCR-SR220 and DCR-SR85 camcorders deliver continuous recording times (LP mode) of up to 41 hours, while the 40GB DCR-SR65 and 30GB DCR-SR45 models provide up to 27 and 20 hours, respectively.

Hard disk camcorders

Sony hard disk camcorders - CMOS Sensor
“Our new hard drive models incorporate intelligent and fun-to-use functions that will make people feel more confident in their moviemaking abilities” said Kelly Davis, director of camcorder marketing at Sony Electronics. The SR220 model features 15x Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* optics, 4-megapixel digital still capture, and a 2.3-megapixel ClearVid CMOS sensor. Like most top-of-the-line camcorders in Sony’s 2008 line, this model includes imaging technologies shared with the company’s digital camera business to improve picture quality and performance.

HDD camcorders - LCD Display
This high-end model integrates face detection technology for both video and photos. It can identify up to eight faces in the camcorder’s LCD frame, and automatically adjust focus, exposure and color control for natural-looking skin tones. Photos get an added boost with the application of flash control.

Sony HDD camcorders - Contrast
Its ClearVid CMOS sensor with Exmor technology features dual noise reduction to keep picture noise at a minimum. This optimized sensor, combined with the Bionz signal processing engine, produces vivid, natural-looking video and photos. Dynamic range optimization is also included to counter the unfavorable effects of high-contrast shooting such as loss of picture detail in harsh lights and deep shadows.

Sony hard drive camcorders - Memory
Hybrid movie recording on an optional Memory Stick PRO Duo media card as well as hard drive is available on all camcorders to extend their recording options. Almost 11 hours of video (LP mode) can be stored on Sony’s new 16GB media card. Both movies and photos can be transferred from the hard drive to the media card in the camcorder without having to use a PC.

Sony SR220 hard disk camcorder - Dolby digital 5.1
All of the new models incorporate a new built-in zoom microphone that zooms in on subjects for clearer sound recordings. The SR220 model records audio in Dolby Digital 5.1-channel surround sound, while the other models capture Dolby Digital 2-channel audio. The SR85 and SR65 models have 1-megapixel CCD imagers for first-rate video and 1-megapixel photos, along with 25x Carl Zeiss Vario-Tessar zoom lenses for image clarity and optimal color resolution. The SR45 unit features a newly-developed 1/8-inch, 680K-pixel CCD imager with a high pixel count in order to produce widescreen (16:9) video, and a potent Carl Zeiss Vario-Tessar 40x optical zoom lens to zoom onto distant subjects with minimal loss of picture quality. All models integrate Sony’s HDD Smart Protection system, which combines physical shock absorbers, G-sensor shock protection and video stream buffering to safeguard against data loss.

Sony hard disk camcorders - Touch screen
For greater ease of use, all hard drive models incorporate a new quick-on feature that takes the camcorders out of standby mode in about one second; 2.7-inch, (16:9) wide LCD touch panel screens for easy framing and viewing of footage; film roll index to view several seconds of video within a thumbnail file; face index to quickly search for scenes by face; and search by voice, color and face using the bundled Picture Motion Browser software. DVD creation is simple with Sony’s one touch DVD burn feature with smart controls. When camcorders are connected to compatible PCs or Handycam stations (supplied on select models) via USB, they will automatically synchronize newest content and burn that footage to DVD with the supplied Picture Motion Browser software.

Hard disk camcorders

Sony hard drice camcorders - Price & Availablity
These models also work with the Sony’s VRD-MC5 DVDirect recorder, which now supports video transfer from Memory Stick media cards. The SR220 camcorder will ship in March for about $850. The SR85, SR65 and SR45 units will ship in February for about $700, $600 and $500, respectively.

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