- Vibrant picture quality, excellent stills mode, user-friendly touch interface
- It's practically the same price as the superior HDR-SR8E
As a standalone product, the HDR-SR7E is nearly impossible to fault. However, most users would be better off getting the HDR-SR8E, which offers a much larger hard drive for a slightly higher premium.
Price$ 2,349.00 (AUD)
For all intents and purposes, the Sony HDR-SR7 is the same camera as the HDR-SR8E, but with a smaller 60GB hard drive. Otherwise, it shares an identical feature set with its bigger brother; including an unchanged lens and sensor, a 6.1-megapixel stills mode, 10x optical zoom, external microphone and headphone jacks and the ability to record in high-definition 1080i. Unfortunately, these aren't the only things both products share in common -- their prices are so similar as to render the HDR-SR7 practically irrelevant.
For reasons we can't quite fathom, the RRP of Sony's assorted handycam range has become increasingly eccentric of late. Different models have entered the marketplace at barely distinguishable prices, making the decision on what to buy more baffling than ever. At $2349, the HDR-SR7E is just $150 less expensive than the HDR-SR8E -- a saving of barely 6 per cent. When you consider that the HDR-SR8E has nearly twice as much storage space, you'd have to be a real penny-pincher to opt for this 'cheaper' model. Nevertheless, it remains a highly impressive product when judged on its own merits, offering the same user-friendly features and impressive image quality that we've come to expect from Sony.
The SR7E records video in the new AVCHD format; which is ideal for hard disk-based handycams due to its higher levels of compression efficiency. This means that the HDR-SR7E can store up to 23 hours of high-def footage onto its hard drive with no loss in image quality (or about eight hours at the highest quality setting).
When your hard disk space eventually fills up, it's just a simple matter of transferring your footage to a computer or burning it to DVD. Creating DVDs is a relatively simple procedure thanks to the handy 'disc burn' button located on the camera's included docking station. Bear in mind however, that to play DVDs in the AVCHD format, you will need a Blu-ray player or other compatible device.
We have recently become spoiled by the exceptional quality of Sony's high-definition cameras, and the HDR-SR7E is no exception; offering equally impressive results as the SR8E. Fans of vibrant footage are sure to be pleased by the x.v. colour mode, which allegedly doubles the maximum range of colours in an image. While we can't attest to the truth in these claims, it will certainly brighten up your videos with an injection of rich, primary tones.
Naturally, the camera fares better when shooting in bright environments -- when we moved to low light, the picture degraded rapidly. Thankfully, the Nightshot mode helps to alleviate this problem, producing crisp, noise-free visuals in universal shades of green. A slow shutter mode is also included for those who prefer to shoot in full colour, though the lethargic strobe effect makes the footage practically unusable.
Once again, Sony has opted to minimise the presence of buttons on the HDR-SR7E in favour of a touch screen interface. This makes for a much more user-friendly experience, especially for novice users, with the majority of advanced functions hidden within the LCD display. Having said that, more experienced users may find the interface a little restrictive; forcing them to hunt through menus whenever the want to make an adjustment. Thankfully, a manual control dial helps to alleviate this somewhat, allowing you to adjust focus and exposure on the fly.
For those with a passing interest in photography, the HDR-SR7E is unlikely to disappoint. Its 6.1 megapixel stills mode with (built-in flash) is capable of competing with many dedicated compact cameras, producing images that are suitable for making medium-sized prints.
If it wasn't for the existence of the HDR-SR8E, this would be one of the best HDD cameras on the market. However, we feel that $150 is a small price to pay for the superior 100GB model.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Samsung portable 1TB T3 drive
Epson EcoTank Expression ET-2500
Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop
UE Boom 2 Bluetooth speaker
Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit router
Smart LED Bulb LB130
Everki ContemPRO Roll Top Laptop Backpack
Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive
Huawei Mate 9
Belkin MIXIT Metallic Lightning to USB Cable
Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive
Acer Swift 7
3SIXT Ultra HD Sports Action Camera
Google Daydream VR headset
Epson WorkForce DS-360W
Logitech G403 Prodigy mouse
Lexar® Portable SSD
HP Pavilion x360 13”
HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450
Dell XPS 13 laptop
Blade 28 backpack by Arc’teryx
Garmin Fenix Chronos smartwatch
Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones
Dell Inspiron 5000 series 2-in-1
Surface Pro 4
Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive
Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Star Wars Death Star Bluetooth levitating rotating speaker review
- 2 Finally! LG OLED TV 2016 range review
- 3 Fetch TV Mighty review: Better than Foxtel
- 4 Fetch TV Mini review: Make your TV a smart TV
- 5 Panasonic Viera DX900U UHD 4K smart TV review
Latest News Articles
- AT&T will acquire Time Warner for US$85.4b in content play
- Facebook adds Apple TV and Chromecast support as video push ramps up
- Remocam review: This security camera can control your home appliances
- Logitech's C922 webcam is the revered C920's vastly upgraded successor
- Jump the line for the newest Chromecast features with Google's new preview program
PCW Evaluation Team
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
- Horizon Zero Dawn review
- How to quit Pokemon Go (or to start enjoying it again)
- Japan's pop culture, anime-friendly, J-Pop shrine, Kanda Myojin
- Which flagship TV is best? Sony 4K HDR Bravia 2016 versus LG 4K HDR OLED 2016
- 10 Blu-ray movies / Best looking Blu-ray movies
- CCSystem EngineerSA
- TPFull Stack .NET DeveloperWA
- FT.Net DeveloperVIC
- CCPega DeveloperNSW
- CCDesktop Engineer l WollongongNSW
- CCLevel 1/2 SAP Support AnalystACT
- CCSalesforce DeveloperNSW
- TPAgile Business AnalystQLD
- TPAgile Project Manager. Sharepoint / PeoplesoftNSW
- CCMDM Consultant/DesignerVIC
- TPProject Support OfficerQLD
- TPLead Change Manager - ERPVIC
- FTNodeJS DeveloperNSW
- FTSenior Project Manager - PERMANENTACT
- FTDigital Sales Account Manager - Global BrandNSW
- TPCrystal Reports DeveloperSA
- TPIT Project CoordinatorVIC
- FTSenior Security Sales SpecialistVIC
- TPImplementation Business Partner - Business ModernisationNSW
- TPBusiness Intelligence Program ManagerVIC
- FTDatabase Modelling SpecialistACT
- FTERP ConsultantQLD
- CCProject Manager (Event Management)NSW
- FTDevOps/Senior Sys Admin - eCommerce - Permanent - Sydney Northern BeachesNSW
- TPSolution Architect - Real-Time Tracking SystemVIC