updated 09:45 am EDT, Thu September 7, 2006
Sony HDR-FX7 Video Camera
Despite the steady increase in availability of cameras, HDV remains in its early stages: technologies which have existed for years in standard-definition digital video are only now arriving in HD form. One of these is three-chip sensor technology, which Sony is introducing today through its HDR-FX7 prosumer video camera. The new 1080i-capable model features Sony's ClearVID CMOS sensor, which uses three chips to improve transfer rates and visual quality when combined with an enhanced imaging processor. These improvements allow for such special features as burst shooting, which can play back six seconds of footage in 24 FPS slow-motion, and taking 1.2-megapixel still shots during live video capture. A three-chip sensor also improves power consumption, according to Sony: up to 8 hours of recording time is possible with an optional high-capacity battery. The camera uses a 37.4-748mm lens with a 20X optical zoom and a digital extension feature that promises 30X total zoom without degrading the picture. Shipping in October, the HDR-FX7 will be available for pre-order from the SonyStyle HandyCam site on September 8th for $3,500. Click through for a larger photo.