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Sony Camcorder - DCR-IP7
Price £1200-£1500
 

Pros:

A pocket size camcorder using the tiny Micromv cartridge that makes taking your camcorder with you everywhere a real possibility.

  • Digital camcorder allows easy file transfer to the PC. Using Sony’s Movie Shaker software you can see a picture index of your shots. You drag them across for keeping
  • The inexpensive Quicktime Pro (£30) can serve as a basic video editor
  • Can record analogue footage from TV, VCR, DVD and other camcorders
  • Screen folds back onto the camera to make menu navigation easy.
  • Now works brilliantly with Sony Vegas editing software (2006)
Making a VCD on a PC (VCR quality disc that plays in a regular DVD player and requires only a regular CD-Writer)
  1. Capture footage from camera using Pinnacle Studio 8.
  2. Edit in Pinnacle Studio 8
  3. Save as VCD quality (eg 1.05 Mb/sec; PAL)
  4. Make VCD using Pinnacle Studio 8

Making a VCD on a PC (VCR quality disc that plays in a regular DVD player).

  1. Capture footage from camera using Movie Shaker
  2. Assemble footage using Movie Shaker (slow)
  3. Save footage using MovieShaker to MMV (slow)
  4. Use Quicktime Pro to Export as MOV (Hinted) (fast)
  5. Use TMPEG to convert to MPG1 for VCD or MPG2 for DVD
  6. Use Nero Burning CD-ROM to make VCD.
Making a DVD on an iMac
  1. Capture footage from camera using Movie Shaker (MMV files)
  2. Convert footage using Quicktime Pro to MOV (Export as Hinted)
  3. Edit footage using Quicktime Pro
  4. Transfer to iMac
  5. Use iDVD to make DVD menu
  6. Burn overnight

Expert approach

  1. Capture footage from camera using Movie Shaker
  2. Convert footage using Quicktime Pro to MOV (Export as Hinted)
  3. Use Adobe Premier or Sony Vegas software to edit

More help

Cons:

  • Sony’s Movie Shaker 3.1, though sufficiently capable for video editing is unbearably slow

  • Little support for the *.mmv format requires an additional time-consuming conversion. Bluetooth feature was premature.

  • Slow, extra conversion stage required as we wait for a utility to appear

  • No batch conversion of MMV files

  • English Manual has Russian on alternate pages making a bad manual poor.

  • Cavernous, unattractive, multipage menu system on camera

  • Sony support - thanks Sony, now the world is wiser

Verdict:

Huge promise that was largely dashed by the lack of drivers from Sony and the lack of support from third party capture and editing software such as Pinnacle Studio 7. Sony’s sluggish Movie Shaker software will talk with the camera which for a digital device is crippling rather than liberating. Early adopters have suffered but Studio 8 (August 2002) may hold the key. The ability to work Sony Vegas however, redeems the situation.

  • Features 4*

  • Value 3*

  • Design 5*

  • Fitness 2* 

 

 

 
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