- Good quality video, Huge LCD
- Bulky, Colour reproduction, Still images only average, Lack of manual controls
The good quality video and huge LCD are countered by the lack of manual options on this DVD camcorder.
Price$ 1,799.00 (AUD)
As the top of the range DVD camcorder in Sony's lineup, the DCR-DVD905 is a predictably good performer. With excellent video quality for a DVD model, a larger than average LCD screen and convenient operating use, the package is a good bet for the amateur user who doesn't want to sacrifice quality. The lack of manual options though will deter more advanced directors.
As an advanced camcorder it comes as no surprise to find the DVD905 is big and bulky. Weighing in at over half a kilo and with a fairly large frame, this isn't the kind of camera that can be conveniently tucked into a coat pocket. The upside of having a large camcorder is the extra room afforded for the screen. Sony has included a large 3.5in LCD display, which provides roughly 75 percent more space than a regular 2.7in screen. This makes a huge difference when focusing on fine details or when using some of the more complex manual options, such as spot focusing. Like all Sony camcorders the LCD is touch sensitive, which we find useful. This also means there aren't so many buttons cluttering up the camera's body.
We were a little perplexed when we had a detailed look at exactly which manual options were on offer with the DVD905; although there are some nice inclusions there are also some glaring omissions. For a start there was the unusual but welcome inclusion of spot metering and focusing, allowing more accurate lighting and improved sharpness in video footage. There's also a great option which allows for slow motion video capture. This basically takes three seconds of footage at an incredibly high frame rate, and then plays it back more slowly over a 12 second period. Sony suggests this is useful for golfers who want to improve their swing, but it has useful applications for any high-speed motion capture.
As with any respectable camcorder the ability to change white balance, use manual focus and alter exposure are included. What is missing is the aperture, gain or shutter controls. We can't say this surprises us, as Sony very rarely include these options on their consumer level cameras, but nonetheless for an expensive model to ship without them is disappointing. Another omission is the lack of a microphone jack. Nothing unusual here, but this kind of detail is sorely missed by anyone wanting to better control the sound input. Sony does provide microphone connectivity through the Active Interface jack atop the camera, but the choice of microphone is limited to proprietary Sony products. That said, the inbuilt microphone is generally acceptable, and even provides 5.1 sound output, though this isn't terribly effective. The 10x optical zoom is about standard for this kind of camera, and was certainly zippy when zooming in and out. Sony's image stabilisation is usually top notch, and we had no problems with the DVD905 in this regard.
Where the DVD905 really shone was in the quality of its video. We're used to seeing DVD camcorders that produce grainy footage marred with compression artefacts. With the DVD905 we were hard pressed to see any signs of image degradation, especially in good lighting conditions. The tell-tale signs of MPEG2 compression were still evident on rapidly moving objects, however, with some noticeable ghosting. For the most part though, things were pretty good with a sharp picture and smooth video. Exposure and saturation seemed almost spot on, though bright colours were a little off. The DVD905 also gave an excellent performance under low light conditions, a rarity for DVD camcorders, with little sign of the speckling we frequently see. There's no video light, but should you wish to take stills there is a flash. Sony's ever-present Nightshot returns, and while it's certainly effective in complete darkness, everything turns out green.
Still pictures weren't quite of the same quality of the video. The four megapixel interpolated images generally looked decent, although we weren't particularly impressed by the sharpness or colour balance. We really missed the lack of manual options here. The pictures looked good enough on a computer screen and would probably do for a 6x4in print, though the DVD905 is no replacement for a dedicated digital camera.
Overall, the DVD905 is good for a DVD camcorder. Video quality is certainly far better than average and we really liked the huge screen. It's a shame the still images weren't up to scratch, but ultimately it's the lack of manual options that we found to the greatest limitation.
Join the newsletter!
cloudandco Smart Cane
WD MY PASSPORT™ Gaming Storage
Apple iPhone X
Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44
Dyson Supersonic™ Hair Dryer Fuchsia/Iron
WD MY PASSPORT™ X Gaming Storage
SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™
Bang and Olufsen BeoVision 14
Panasonic OLED 4K Ultra HD TV - TH-77EZ1000U
Panasonic OLED 4K Ultra HD TV - TH-55EZ950U
Toys for Boys
Google Daydream View VR Headset
UBTech First Order Stormtrooper Robot
Onyx Smart Walkie Talkie
Lego Mindstorms EV3
Ubiquiti Network’s Front Row Camera
Propel Star Wars T-65 X-Wing Drone
LaCie Rugged USB-C Portable Hard Drive
Bose SoundLink Micro
Leica M10 Digital Rangefinder Camera
PETKIG Go Smart Dog Leash
iRobot Roomba 980 Vaccum Cleaning Robot
Belkin Pocket Power 10,000mAh
WD MY CLOUD™ HOME Personal Cloud Storage
Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K
Nest Protect Smart Smoke Alarm
Amazon Echo Bluetooth Speaker
Xbox One X
Toffee Bags Commuter Satchel
Panasonic Hi-Fi - SC-UA7GS-K
Dearear Endear In-ear Wireless Earphones
Tile Pro Bluetooth Tracker
Urbanworx Full HD Action Camera
Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse
Panasonic Portable Splashproof Fun - RF-D20U
3SIXT 3-in-1 Smartphone Lens Kit
Ikea NORDMÄRKE Wireless Charging Pad
Logitech Doodle Collection Wireless Mouse
Raspberry Pi Starter Kit
Lexon Flip Alarm Clock
Kogan Bluetooth Soundbar
Fallout Geeki Tikis
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Hisense takes the fight to home entertainment heavyweights with flagship Series 8 and 9 ULED TVs
- 2 Sony's latest Ultra HD OLED debuts in Australia
- 3 Panasonic Ultra HD OLED TV Review
- 4 D-Link Omna 180 Cam HD DSH-C310 review
- 5 Oppo A77 smartphone: Full in-depth review
Latest News Articles
- Keep Watch Day and Night with Uniden’s Two-In-One Camera and Spotlight
- Sony make shooting in HDR easy with new 4K camcorders
- Sony announces Australian availability for new waterproof RX0 action-camera
- Microsoft's Beam becomes Mixer, adds four person split-screen streaming to battle Twitch
- Microsoft's Story Remix uses machine learning and mixed reality to make your movies awesome
PCW Evaluation Team
I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.
It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.
Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.
The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.
The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.
The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic
- LG V30+ review: The videographer's smartphone arrives
- Fitbit Ionic review: Impressive but not quite iconic
- Xbox One X review: Brave new world
- 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
- TPTest Automation EngineerQLD
- FTBusiness Analyst - TableauOther
- CCTemporary ICT Support AnalystACT
- FTDigital ProducerQLD
- FTSenior Network Engineer (RUN-BAU)VIC
- FTNetwork ArchitectVIC
- CCTableau DeveloperQLD
- FTService Modeller/DesignerACT
- TPSenior Business Analyst - ieMR - Digital Health ProgramQLD
- FTSecurity Operations EngineerOther
- FTSoftware DeveloperOther
- FTProject Administrator/Junior Project ManagerOther
- TPSenior Business AnalystNSW
- FTJunior Manual Tester - Accounting & FinanceOther
- CCJunior to Mid Level - Java Developer - BrisbaneNSW
- FTApplication Support SpecialistVIC
- FTPrinciple Security Consultant / Practice Partner - IT Services - North Ryde areaNSW
- FTBusiness AnalystOther
- TPFull Stack Developer - AWSNSW
- FTData ScientistACT
- FTGraduate C# DeveloperNSW
- TPTechnical Lead (Office 365)QLD
- CCSenior Program ManagerNSW
- FTTechnology Project CoordinatorOther
- CCReact.js DeveloperQLD