Buying a new digital camera can be a bit tricky because of all the different specs it can possess. The safest way to go would be to get a model that is well-rounded in capabilities to make it worth the hefty price. It should also be up-to-date in terms of technology to make it even more convincing to get. Sony has a model that may just fit the bill with the Sony HDR-CX350V. Serving as a compliment to its BRAVIA TVs, the HDR-CX350V has a lot of potential for consumers that are looking for a reliable camcorder for different occasions.
The Sony HDR-CX350V isn’t a model that is going to fit in the pocket, but it still remains to be small and weighs just 13 ounces which should allow people to hold the camcorder still using one hand with ease. Like other modern Handycam models, the HDR-CX350V has a 2.7″ LCD display for reviewing video and images with clarity on its 230k pixels resolution. Visibility of the screen remains clear even when viewing screen outdoors.
This is the camcorder to get for people that go out often because of its professional wide-angle Sony G Lens. A better view can be seen through the 27.4mm focal length wide-angle lenses, but certain special occasions may find this spec to be useful as well. The lens is specially crafted for colors to be more accurate and detailed than old models. With its “Full HD” specification, users can record in 1920 x 1080 resolution so that the video can be outputted to the latest high-definition displays and monitors for a very lively experience.
The quality is pushed even further with the “Exmor R” CMOS sensor which is a back-illuminated sensor that can effectively create high-quality footage in low light situations. This contributes nicely to the overall image clarity by reducing the grain. It is even designed to be friendly for amateurs and beginners with the Optical SteadyShot image stabilization. This technology fixes the problems caused by camera shake by using and applying an innovative algorithm known as “3-way Shake-cancelling.” This not only eliminates wobbly effects even when not using a tripod, but it also adds a degree of electronic roll stability to make captures even smother.
Being a wide-angle lens, the optical zoom isn’t the best out of the camcorders being offered by Sony (12x optical zoom), but the image still remains free of distortion even on the higher zoom levels. It is even possible to zoom even closer using the digital zoom supporting up to 160x.
Another nice feature is the built-in 32 GB internal memory which should be enough for hours of high-definition video storage to be stored. If ever more memory is needed, memory cards that support the Memory Stick PRO or SD format can be used, too.
“This camera is an important upgrade in image quality and features. I replaced a Sony HDR-CX100 by this camcorder and the upgrade is noticeable. First, the LCD screen is much more detailed and brighter, and that was something I missed when I compared the CX100 with the Canon VIXIA’s, specially when I film in the sunlight. Second, the light sensitivity is simple AMAZING. With very low light this camcorder is capable to obtain beautiful and grain less HD movies. I guess this is because the new backlight XMOR sensor and of course the Sony G lens. Third, the stabilizer effect is something that I have never seen in any other camcorders: you can walk filming without any undesirable shake or vibration in the filming movie. Also if you film in a car or in a sport boat the steady shot feature in this camera is simple incredible. This helps you a lot not just for filming but also to take photos using the zoom in low light conditions. Fourth, the wide angle lens is a very nice feature that allows you to capture more wide scenes and is very useful when you don’t have to much space to film. Fifth, this camcorder power up in a very short time and open and close the lens protector automatically, so you can’t miss any good shots opportunities. This is what I can tell you about the most important features for me. I guess I will use this camcorder for a long time not just for filming but also to take photographs.” – F.Felipe (Chile) Amazon Verified Purchase
The Sony HDR-CX350V is not just for recording video. The high grade of the lens makes this model great for taking pictures as well. On its own, the HDR-CX350V can take some beautiful 7-megapixel shots that can later be transferred to larger screens like the Sony HDTVs. The “Dual Record” feature can be activated to let people take photos even while actively recording. This comes at a price with half-resolution, but it is still an excellent way to capture as many memories as possible.
Another built-in feature that comes at a surprise is the GPS support with geotagging functions. It uses the NAVTEQ maps so anybody can tag their own shooting locations for archiving purposes. Once the recording sessions are finished, the data can remain in the flash memory where the videos can be viewed from the screen anytime. Playback is also possible via HDMI connection for maximum 1080p enjoyment or the files can be directly copied to a special external drive without a computer.
The Sony HDR-CX350V is still in the mid-range, but stays very ambitious with features that all kinds of users will enjoy. The image quality is exceptional for standard use, but the wide-angle lenses allow some unique and creative ideas to be formed. The built-in GPS receiver also shows that this camcorder is really meant to be used outside more often.
• “I’m going to be short and to the point here. I need a camcorder for the type of business I run so image quality is very important to me. When watching the videos back on an HDTV, the quality is absolutely amazing to me. The Handycam has come a long way! I did a test video outside at night with only the street lamps to light the environment. I was totally floored when I imported it on to my computer to realize that there was very minimal grain. When shooting outdoors during the day, the sensor does an amazing job of automatically adjusting the exposure depending on your orientation with the sun.” – M.Speelman (OH,USA) Amazon Verified Purchase
• “After trying to decide between mid-priced Canon Vixia and Sony HD models, I settled on this one first and foremost because it has a wide angle (27mm for stills and 29mm for video)lens. I have tried low-quality screw-on attachment lenses on camcorders in the past and they always distort the image. This is a fantastic lens and gives you all the benefits of wide shooting without accessories (cheap or otherwise). What’s more, when I do want to use the wide angle attachment, I get a very wide fisheye!
So far, I have been very satisfied with the image quality, features, and performance of the camera, but I have only used it for about 24 hours so I will have to update soon.
But if you are torn between camcorders, consider the lens on this one if (like me) wide angle is important to your shooting.” – J.B.Fisher(Charlotte,USA)
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