Sony DCR-HC96 HandyCam MiniDV Carl Zeiss T* lens 10 x optical 3 Megapixel DV-In £373.75
Sony DCR-HC96 HandyCam MiniDV Carl Zeiss T* lens 10 x optical 3 Megapixel DV-In £373.75

Sony DCR-HC96 HandyCam MiniDV Carl Zeiss T* lens 10 x optical 3 Megapixel DV-In £373.75

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I think this is a very good price for the Sony 3.3 MegaPixel Digital Camcorder, with a Carl Zeiss T* Lens and 10x Optical Zoom. It's just £373.75 including free SuperSaver delivery from Amazon...

Features: 3.3 Megapixel advanced HAD CCD # 10x Optical zoom # 120x Digital zoom # Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* lens # Super SteadyShot # NightShot # 2.7" wide hybrid LCD # Screen with touch panel # Wide select button # 2016x1512 pixels still image # 6 programme AE # Built-in flash # Spot Metre and spot focus # Advanced USB # Streaming (Video CD Burning) # Wireless Remote Control


Original Poster

[COLOR=darkred]Manufacturer's Description[/COLOR]
The DCR-HC96 from Sony gives you a full-featured, compact MiniDV camcorder at an affordable price. Highlights include the Advanced HAD CCD imager, which captures stunning detail and clarity, and 10x optical zoom with Super SteadyShot picture stabilisation, which focuses on distant subjects, providing clear close-up images with less distortion. The Carl Zeiss Vario-Tessar lens offers less glare and increased contrast for vivid, more life-like colour and tones. A 3.3-megapixel sensor allows you to take still images that can be printed at photo quality up to 10 x 14 inches.
Make your personal videos complete with additional customization features such as Picture and Fader effects for creative and professional looking enhancements. Picture Package software helps you easily organize and edit still images and video.

[COLOR=darkred]3.3 Megapixel (Gross) Advanced HAD CCD Imager[/COLOR]
1/3-inch Advanced HAD (Hole Accumulation Diode) CCD with 2050K (effective) pixels provides stunning detail and clarity with exceptional video (up to 530 lines of horizontal resolution) and still image performance. The Megapixel technology enhances your digital videos and digital still photography performance.
[COLOR=darkred]MiniDV Recording[/COLOR]
Offers up to 530 lines of horizontal resolution, 3x the colour bandwidth and a significantly higher signal/noise ratio, to provide spectacular video performance.

[COLOR=darkred]10x Optical/120x Digital Zoom[/COLOR]
The optical zoom helps to bring the action close up from far away. In addition the digital zoom interpolation means that extreme digital zooming is clearer, with less distortion than previous types of digital zooms.

[COLOR=darkred]Professional Quality Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* Lens[/COLOR]
Carl Zeiss lenses have an advanced optical multi-layer coating that offers less glare and flare with increased contrast. This results in vivid image brilliance, true-to-life colour saturation and perfect renditions of subtle tones. The additional T* coating on the lens further reduces unwanted glare and flare.

[COLOR=darkred]2.7-Inch Wide Touch Panel SwivelScreen LCD Display (123K Pixels)[/COLOR]
The 2.7-inch wide (16:9) LCD screen provides excellent viewing clarity with improved resolution. The high resolution 123K pixel LCD screen rotates up to 270 degrees for multiple viewing angles providing sharp, detailed images for monitoring or playback, and the widescreen format makes shooting in 16:9 mode and composing shots even easier.

[COLOR=darkred]Analog to Digital Conversion with Pass[/COLOR]
Through Convert and/or record any analog NTSC video source to digital video via the analog inputs. Analog NTSC video can also be passed through the digital Handycam Camcorder directly into a PC via the i.LINK interface in real-time for easy PC editing of your analog footage.

[COLOR=darkred]Digital Still Memory Mode with Memory Stick Duo Media[/COLOR]
Capture still images at 2016 x 1512 (3.0 megapixel) resolution, directly onto Memory Stick Duo Media for easy transfer to PCs for e-mailing, printing or sharing with other compatible Memory Stick devices.
[COLOR=darkred]Progressive Shutter System[/COLOR]
A mechanical shutter system that provides progressive scan performance while utilizing an interlaced scanning system. Digital still images will be sharp and clear with excellent definition.

[COLOR=darkred]Super SteadyShot Picture Stabilisation System[/COLOR]
Picture stabilisation system that uses motion sensors to detect and compensate for camera "shake" without compromising picture quality like some other digital stabilisation systems.
[COLOR=darkred]Handycam Station
[/COLOR]The supplied Handycam Station cradle provides quick and easy connections to a TV for viewing or to a PC for editing and sharing video. Just placing the camcorder on the Handycam Station instantly makes the connections. No need to search for cables or wires when charging or playing back.

[COLOR=darkred]i.LINK DV Interface[/COLOR]
Digital high-speed bi-directional interface which provides audio-video communication between two compatible devices. This connection allows for pure digital transfer between devices equipped with an IEEE1394 interface, such as camcorders, digital VTRs, capture cards, and PCs.
[COLOR=darkred]One-Touch Wide-Angle Shooting[/COLOR]
Easily switch between 4:3 and 16:9 aspect ratios for shooting with just the touch of a button.

[COLOR=darkred]Manual Focus[/COLOR]
Allows the user to manually adjust the focus of the camcorder using the touch panel. Manual focusing also allows the user to control the focus in difficult situations where either the environment or the subject does not allow the camcorder's auto focus to perform optimally, such as when shooting through a window or in a crowded environment.

[COLOR=darkred]Box Contents[/COLOR]
Sony DCRHC96 Mini DV camcorder
AC-L25 power adapter/in-camera charger
NP-FP50 rechargeable battery
DRCA-C152 Handycam station
RMT-831 remote control
Stereo AV cable
USB cable
CD-ROM (Picture Package Software ver. 1.5, USB driver

seems to have gone up now to £411

How does this compare to all of the other handycams? I want one but have no idea what's best!

Anybody any ideas? Also, why has the price gone up?

Original Poster

Not sure of how good or bad this is, generally Sony's get very good reviews though. The prices goes up and down often on Amazon, still a pretty good price, but if you can wait, I think it'll drop again in the next few weeks.

A decent second best:


I have a Sony miniDV similar to this and though I don't have anything else to compare it to I have never been happy with the results. It was rated highly in the mag reviews but I'm just not happy with it - controls etc are fine but the final output doesn't impress.

Any other thoughts on this before I place an order?


Any other thoughts on this before I place an order?

Tenex's comments should be enough to put you off.

+£400 is a lot of money, and for that the quality should blow you away.

£517 in the USA gets you a Canon HV-10 1920x1080 High Definition camcorder, anything above £350 is paying for brand name for a minidv imho.


Tenex's comments should be enough to put you off.+£400 is a lot of money, … Tenex's comments should be enough to put you off.+£400 is a lot of money, and for that the quality should blow you away.

It wasn't my intention to put anyone off I bought mine at the same time others on another forum bought them and they seemed happy . so that leaves me with the conclusion either I'm picky over the quality of the output or I may have a poor example (faulty?) or others aren't as demanding. I'm not surewhich applies. I'd love to use a HD one to see the difference.

The video mags do rate these Sony's highly.

One thing I'd certainly be considering now is HD. I paid over £400 for the Sony and there are a lot of competitors available for a lot less - even Sony's.

It's not going to be long before HD models are falling in price.

One other thing: I shoot all in 16:9 as it fits modern TVs is this a pure 16:9 as mine isn't?

The bottom of the range doesn't do true widescreen but this is the top of the MiniDV range and does.

Today's price [COLOR=#990000]£396.20[/COLOR]
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