PERSONAL OBSERVATIONS:

SONY HDR-SR11

This camcorder produces stunning, silky-smooth, 60i videos with excellent, low-light image quality. Besides 60p, 60i is the smoothest frame rate for fast-moving subjects like running kids and slow-motion playback. The build-in 60GB hard drive can hold more than seven hours of 8GB/hr Full-HD videos, and removable Memory Sticks expand the capacity further. The 5.6MP CMOS sensor can capture Point-&-Shoot quality 10.2MP still photos - 2 X 5,080K actual photo resolution. However, the one-second shutter lag makes it difficult to photograph moving subjects. The SR11 is equipped with a fairly typical 40-480mm (35mm equivalent) 12X optical zoom, which is not wide enough for many places, but adequate on the telephoto end. This camcorder definitely has class-leading design and build quality.




Sony, in my opinion, has the most complete consumer camcorder system because:
Only Sony offers AV tripods with fluid heads and remote camera controls - a must-have accessory for filming long ceremonies or activities from a distance. Good camera work, shake free and silent with smooth zooming, is always far more noticeable than slight differences in video quality between brands.
Sony also offers an affordable underwater case rated 5 meters or 17 feet for shallow water sports like kayaking, snorkeling, and white-water rafting. This one-size-fit-all case is a little big for the tiny SR11 and requires adding a lot of weight to achieve neutral buoyancy for snorkeling.
Most importantly, among camcorder makers, only Sony offers a native AVCHD editor, Vegas Movie Studio, and version 9 has worked flawlessly with our SR11 so far. Since Sony developed the AVCHD video format, the AVCHD camcorder (SR11), and the most advanced AVCHD editor (Vegas Movie Studio), choosing products from the same company was a logical way for us to minimize potential hardware-software-compatibility problems. By the way, this software does have a steep learning curve.



The SR11 Full-HD videos appear smooth and sharp with vivid colors on our HDTV.

However, playing the SR11 AVCHD videos on our iMac required a lot of experimenting to find the best solution:

Apple iMac, using Sony Picture Motion Browser (Windows XP) iMovie 09 (Mac OS X Leopard)
Import one hour of AVCHD video takes 15 minutes 2 hours
8GB/hr AVCHD video (.MTS) after importing remains 8GB/hr AVCHD video (.m2ts) balloons to 45GB/hr AIC video (.mov)
Full-HD 60i frame rate appears silky smooth a little less smooth
Full-HD 60i video quality is excellent a little softer
Trim and save videos in 8GB/hr AVCHD 45GB/hr Apple Intermediate Codec (AIC)
Edit videos - add titles, transitions, special effects... must purchase Vegas Movie Studio iMovie 09
Usability PMB - Easy to learn & use, VMS - Very steep learning curve Easiest to learn and use



The 60i video appears slightly sharper and smoother when played with the Sony Picture Motion Browser.



The 5.6MP CMOS sensor can capture 10.2MP Point-&-Shoot quality still photos - 2 X 5,080K actual photo resolution. SR11 versus dSLR:

Overall, we are very satisfied with this camcorder!
 
 

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