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$1,488.88 list($1,899.99)
1. Sony DCRIP220 MicroMV 2.11-MegaPixel
$1,351.95 list($1,699.99)
2. Sony DCRIP7BT MicroMV Digital
$1,199.94 $1,078.43 list($1,299.99)
3. Sony DCRIP1 MicroMV Handycam Camcorder
list($1,299.00)
4. Sony DCRIP5 MicroMV Digital Camcorder
list($1,499.99)
5. Sony DCRIP55 MicroMV 1.0-MegaPixel

1. Sony DCRIP220 MicroMV 2.11-MegaPixel CCD Bluetooth Camcorder
by Sony
list price: $1,899.99
our price: $1,488.88
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00006IIU1
Catlog: Photography
Manufacturer: Sony
Sales Rank: 4439
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Amazon.com Review

Early Adopters Pick: Oct ober 2002. The world's first digital camcorder that also takes 2.1-megapixe l digital still pictures; weighs only 24 ounces and has integrated Bluetooth te chnology to transfer images to a computer without wires or cables.

Sony's 2-megapixel DCR-IP220 is a serious recording tool for the digital videographer who wants all of Sony's advanced features in a single camcorder. The DCR-IP220 records on the miniscule MicroMV tapes, offers Super NightShot and Night Framing modes, hologram autofocusing, and Bluetooth connectivity. Unfortunately, all of these hefty features add up to a fairly hefty price.

Assuming that cost isn't an object, this camcorder does pretty much anything you'd want it to. The MicroMV tapes--70 percent smaller than MiniDV--each have a 64 KB memory chip so you can scan through different sections of the tape like a DVD, locating scenes by their thumbnails.

The high-detail 2.5-inch LCD swings up above the camcorder, and pivots 270-degrees so you can view it from almost any angle--including in front of the camera. The LCD also serves as a touchscreen interface, with a stylus for accessing menus, and it displays both approximate battery life and remaining storage space.

For storing short clips and still images (at 1,600 by 1,200 resolution), the DCR-IP220 features a Memory Stick slot and includes an 8 MB stick. Its night and low-light filming capabilities are quite impressive--we were able to read details from across a darkened room with the Super NightShot mode. And the Night Framing mode takes bright, full-color still images in limited light.

Connectivity options abound, with FireWire (either camera to camera or camera to PC), USB, and Bluetooth support built into the camcorder. It also includes a color viewfinder, intelligent pop-up flash, and an adequate (although not stellar) 10x optical zoom.

Sony's DCR-IP220 isn't for the faint of wallet, but if you're not satisfied with anything but the best, this camcorder was built for you. --J. Curtis

Pros:

  • Excellent night modes
  • Sharp, high-resolution video and image quality
  • Unique and compact tapes

Cons:

  • Expensive (though chock-full of cutting-edge features)
  • Only 10x zoom
... Read more

Features

  • Sleek, 2.1-megapixel MicroMV camcorder and digital still camera
  • 10x optical zoom lens (digital zoom to 120x) with Super SteadyShot image stabilizer
  • 2.5-inch rotating precision SwivelScreen hybrid touch panel LCD
  • Memory Stick slot, wireless remote control, and Super NightShot forshooting in low lighting
  • NP-FF70 InfoLithium Rechargeable Battery

Reviews (4)

3-0 out of 5 stars microMV is not for everyone
on paper, the IP220 looks like a winner. but after a close look and i'm not as sold...

pros:
- delivers vibrant colors when shooting in daylight.
- 10x carl zeiss vario-sonnar T* lens.
- 2MP still capability.
- great connectivity options: firewire, USB, S-video, headphone, bluetooth, mic input, etc.
- has a built in pop-up flash for taking stills.
- steady shot and night shot.
- ability to record mpeg videos directly to memory stick.
- top-loading cassette.
- boatloads of optional accessories.
- manual focus/zoom ring on lens.
- has NightFraming which allows you to focus and compose your scene in total darkness with the aid of the infrared emitter, then shoot a full-color still with the pop-up flash. very cool.

cons:
- microMV format is proprietary and may go the way of betamax.
- microMV video quality is noticeably worse than MiniDV.
- images emerge washed-out when shooting indoors.
- uses an mpeg version that may not be compatible with your current video editor.
- Super Night Shot, Color Night Shot very choppy in low/no light.
- not Mac compatible.
- very bad ergonomics - zoom and photo shutter controls are poorly positioned.
- LCD can't tilt backwards - if you've had it before, you'll miss the ability to show kids themselves as you videotape them.
- the advantage of microMV is size but that's not reflected in this camcorder. this is the biggest microMV camcorder out there: 3.9"W x 3.0"H x 5.3"D, weighing 1.5 lbs. you can get smaller camcorders like the panasonic's gs70 or sony's trv33 or the pc105. granted, those have less features, mainly still camera capability (2.0 megapixel vs 1.0 megapixel).
- as with most sony products, you pay a premium, pushing up the price.
- the included 8MB memory stick (for a 2 megapixel still camera!) is unacceptable. you'll need at least a 64MB memory stick with if you want to take full advantage of the higher resolution pics you'll be taking.
- although bundling the camcorder and still camera together means you only have to carry one piece of equipment, it also means that if one breaks, you have to replace both.
- as an alternate to this bundling strategy, you can get a gs70 or trv33 or pc105 and get a 3 megapixel still camera and still save money in the process!
- battery life could be better.
- only 2.5" LCD and it's not as crisp as others in the sony line-up.
- non-intuitive menu system.
- bottom loading battery so you can't replace this while mounted on a tripod.
- the accessory shoe is not a hot shoe.
- no built in video light but you can get one less than a hundred bucks.

in the end, the microMV format is a deal breaker for me. it is sony proprietary and not widely supported. and the main reason for even using microMV (size) is not really reflected in this camcorder. if you're looking for a camcorder/camera hybrid, i'd say wait a couple more years (hopefully). the still quality is just not there yet. your best bet is to get a decent camcorder and complement it with a stand-alone digital camera.

i hope this helps your buying decision. peace.

3-0 out of 5 stars Micromv:Not for the Serious Computer Video Editor
I bought the Sony DCR IP220 because of its 2.0 Megapixel capabilities and while I love the resolution that it displays on the TV, I am not impressed with the quality of footage after capturing to computer. Here are the pros and cons that I have found:

PROS:
1.Great resolution and great quality video produced (530 lines and 2.2 megapixels). (5 star quality)
2. Digital zoom (X700) works fine using a tripod and produces somewhat clear images. Any zoom magnification up to X120, produces very clear moving images.
3. The still pictures are compatible with any 2.0 megapixel camera.
4. Low light video never appeared grainy.
5. Touch screen menu-Many options are available & can be reached quickly. It has a similar feeling to a PDA Palm pilot.

CONS:
1.Video Editing or video email is only possible if your computer system is Windows ME, XP, 2000, and above. If you have Windows 98/98SE and below, then you need to upgrade.
2.If you are into serious computer editing, then this is not the camera for you. The Micromv format is supported only by Sony's Movie Shaker (included), Ulead's MediaStudio Pro 7, and Pinnacle's Studio Deluxe 8.1 . MovieShaker captures with the best quality, but it produces pixellated moving images and stores the files as .mmv. After capturing, the file must be exported to mpeg/avi/etc format. To render 1min 46secs of mmv footage, it took me about 30 mins for mpeg 2 and 8 mins for mpeg 1. MediaStudio 7 captures micromv footage very easily (after downloading the patch) and offers the quickest,most compatable options (direct output to avi/mpeg). Capture is instantaneous (as is cpaturing from most DV camcorders). However, the quality is also somewhat pixellated and the playback is jerky in moving areas. I have not tried Pinnacle.
2. No microphone input jack! It is hard to record a speaker's message if you are in crowds of people. If you have large hands, you may end up covering the bulit in mic and receive no sound at all.
3. Tiny Buttons!It is very difficult to zoom using the very tiny zoom button. Also,the record button is sticking out and you can accidently knock it.
4. Touch screen menu. If for any reason the touch screen is damaged, then it is dificult to command function of the camcorder.

If you are not into Computer editing or emailing video, then this camera deserves a "5 Star Rating". However, considering that I bought the camera with the intentions of editing, I have to say that I am a little upset with the finished quality.

4-0 out of 5 stars DCR-IP220 - Good ergonomics, but unproven tape format
Pros: Small size. Good ergonomics. Screen on back. Still photos. Compact tapes & batteries.

Cons: Expensive. MicroMV format may or may not equal MiniDV. Lens could be more wide-angle.

I found the camera easy to carry, though I kind of wish it had a neck strap. I think the size is about right - not too small to handle, but still very easy to carry. One complaint/frustration was that its lense doesn't seem to be as wide-angle as I'm used to - trying to tape inside buildings, etc. I found myself constantly backing into corners and still cutting people off at the waist, etc. - I may have to look into getting a wide-angle lense for this. Of course, I was trying to tape inside 150 year old houses with small rooms, so that didn't help. As for video and still quality, all I can say is that they look fine to me - I watched for pixelization or other artifacts reported as being problems with MicroMV, but haven't noticed any even in dark areas. I will say that experimenting with the night shot and super night shot, I don't see much use for them - I could hardly distinguish what I recorded in these modes. I was impressed by the ability of the still camera and flash to take decent photos of buildings from around 50 feet away in near total darkness. I didn't expect the flash to work at such a distance, but the photos came out quite well. One reason I selected this camera was that I thought it was better designend for use in underwater housings than the PC120BT I was also considering - primarily because the screen is on the back rather than flipping out to the side (which requires a much larger housing, or not using the screen). I didn't get a chance to try the camera in an underwater housing on this trip, but I still think the design will lend itself to this application. Ergonomically I prefer the IP220, but I have lingering questions about whether I sacrificed video quality by going with this model. But that's based on others's comments on previous MicroMV camcorders - not on any problems I've seen with my own camera or video. I haven't yet loaded video or stills onto my PC for editing, so I can't comment on that.

4-0 out of 5 stars Very good camcorder except...
I bought my IP220 two weeks ago. The unit is fairly compact and light which I carry to places with ease.

The pros:
1. Video quality is excellent, same for the recorded sound qulity which is crystal clear
2. Swivel LCD panel is very easy to use and innovative
3. Touch screen feature works well and is pretty user-friendly
4. The set sits perfectly in the palm and the finger position also fits very nicely with the zoom lever, photo button and record button

The cons:
1. Even with 2.1 Mega pixels CCD, IP220 does not provide the kind of picture quality as other Sony digital cameras (like DSC-70), especially at 1600x1200 resolution
2. The MicroMV to MPEG2 conversion through movie shaker 3.1 (MPEG2-TS)is incompatible with the regular DVD standard (MPEG2-PS), therefore, it is impossible to burn DVD for regular DVD player use without converting it through a third-party software (e.g. pinnacle studio 8)

I would recomment this unit to those who care more about the video quality than photo quality. ... Read more


2. Sony DCRIP7BT MicroMV Digital Camcorder w/ 2.5" Hybrid LCD, 8MB Memory Stick, MPEG Movie, & Network Capability
by Sony
list price: $1,699.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B000063LHM
Catlog: Photography
Manufacturer: Sony
Sales Rank: 4499
Average Customer Review: 2.89 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Amazon.com Product Description

Featuring a compact, vertically aligned body to go along with its potent 10x optical zoom, the DCR-IP7BT is the first of two camcorders featuring the unique new recording format MicroMV, which records using the same format used to encode DVDs: MPEG-2.

Lens and CCD
The two central components of any video camera (or digital still camera), are its lens and CCD (the image sensor). This Sony model builds around a 10x optical zoom, which is paired with Super SteadyShot image stabilization to cut down on the shakes and jitters common to most amateur video footage. The CCD sports a pixel count of 680,000 pixels--great for video--that translates the image into around 500 lines of resolution.

Size
The size of the DCR-IP7BT is actually one of the features that Sony is really excited about, and it's easy to understand why. The device is extraordinarily small; it's somewhere on the order of a half-inch to an inch smaller in its dimensions than comparable models. That's quite a hefty reduction, making the IP7BT small enough to fit in a pocket. Because of the small size of the camcorder, its 2.5-inch LCD becomes comparatively larger than it would otherwise be.

Digital Photo Mode
Like many digital camcorders, the IP7BT features a digital still mode. And, like many digital camcorders, the snapshot mode is good for taking stills that can be e-mailed or posted on a Web site, but not for making high-quality prints.

Bluetooth
Bluetooth has been a talked-about wireless protocol for years, but it's only recently started to gather steam in the electronics world. Sony is leading the pack by incorporating Bluetooth networking into the DCR-IP7BT. The connectivity standard allows you to transfer your still images, or any of the short MPEG movie clips you record to the Memory Stick, to any Bluetooth-equipped computer.

Cables and Connectors
Despite the small size of the IP7BT, there are a number of audio and video inputs and outputs, making it a very flexible and capable machine. Most intriguingly, besides S-video, there are also composite video in/outputs--composite video provides the highest level of quality in home-theater setups. Four audio, stereo in/outputs are included. In addition, to transfer your digital stills and MPEG movies, a USB port is included. Of course, in any digital camcorder, you should expect to find an IEEE 1394 port, also known as FireWire or iLink, which the IP7BT provides.

Included with the DCR-IP7BT are the Bluetooth adapter, a USB cable, an 8 MB Memory Stick, a wireless remote, an AC-L20 power adapter, an NP-FF50 InfoLithium battery, two AA batteries, iLink Cable (four-pin to four-pin), AV cable, lens cap, wrist strap, and a software CD-ROM (software is Windows only). ... Read more

Features

  • MicroMV camcorder
  • 10x optical, 120x digital, zoom with Super SteadyShot image stabilization
  • 2.5 inch color LCD monitor and color EVF
  • Records in MPEG2 video format--the same format used in DVDs
  • Bluetooth adapter lets you wirelessly email pictures and MPEG movies

Reviews (18)

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent, Useful, Easy, SMALL!
I've had my MicroMV for two months and love it. I put off buying a replacement camcorder for a few years as the technology seemed to be in a constant flux - it still is but I took the plunge with the Sony product as it has all the features I was looking for. The size is the amazing thing. My only problem is getting my "sausage" fingers to work the buttons!

So far, the videos (digi-tape) I've taken are excellent. I find the camera easy to use and of the same quality I've come to expect from Sony. I found an extra-capacity battery, 128MB mem-stick and Sony wide-angle lens and filter kit on eBay and these have made the camera a joy to use.

Videos taken on a recent London vacation are tremendous and it was easy to whip out the camera and take a quick digi-tape or "quickie" MPEG on any moment's notice. The VGA stills are only good for 4x6 prints (in good light) or wallets. They're really only useful for emails. If you want framed stills, use your 3.3MP digi-camera or your trusty 35MM.

I've been happy with Sony "Movie Shaker" and have edited a few MPEGs and clips from the tape to my BusLink USB HD. Bluetooth registration was a bit of a puzzle but I made it through in about 45 minutes (whew!). I haven't tried my SoNet uploading yet as I haven't had a need to.

All in all, this purchase has to last another 3-5 years and I think I'll be very happy with this little wonder.

1-0 out of 5 stars Great idea - horrible implementation
Pros: Incredible small size; can literally be carried in your pocket;

Cons: Video quality mediocre at best (740x320); transferring data files from IP7 to PC has been a nightmare. Literally 25-30 hours of work with varying degrees of usefull tech support (Sony drops the ball on this one) - Formats available are MPG1 and a form of MPG2 called TR - File must then be translated- this is explained in the following website http://134.102.55.200/haupt/SonyIP7_to_MPEG2-PS.htm

In summary, I would wait at least another year or two, when the kinks have been knocked out. This leaves to much to be desired.

1-0 out of 5 stars Nightmare
Doesn't work with my MAC. Nightmare trying to download on PC. Sometimes works w/ an i.Link port on a Sony computer. Now it doesnt' even do that. Sometimes worked on a 3rd party FireWire card for my PC, but I had to pull card out and re-install everytime to try to get it to capture. Now that doesn't even work. MPEG2 bites, must convert w/ DOS program. MovieShaker is the worst. I hate this camera w/ a passion. I'm going to throw mine ($$$$!) away or sell it on [other online site]. Anybody want mine? I'm going to get one that plugs directly into my iMac.

4-0 out of 5 stars ultraportable, still capture, but microMV is not for all
the dcrip7BT is for the early adopters among us. it has "wow" written all over it but make sure you're ready for the limitations of the microMV format. it improves on the ip5 by adding still capability and bluetooth.

pros:
- small size, and lightweight: 1.88"W x 4.0"H x 3.13"L weighing 12 oz. this is the main selling point of this camcorder.
- 10x optical zoom.
- Super SteadyShot image stabilization - and sony's system works.
- delivers vibrant colors when shooting in daylight.
- still photo capability (low res only).
- connectivity options: firewire, S-video, composite, bluetooth, USB.

cons:
- microMV format is proprietary and may go the way of betamax.
- microMV video quality is noticeably worse than MiniDV.
- microMV also uses a different data-compression scheme than MiniDV, which means that it may be incompatible with your DV-editing software.
- low-res still photo capability suitable only for email or posting on web.
- no video light.
- not Mac compatible.
- very bad ergonomics - a small camcorder will have small buttons and consolidated controls.
- as with most sony products, you pay a premium, pushing up the price.
- battery life could be better.
- only 2.5" LCD.
- non-intuitive menu system.
- no headphone or mic input jack.
- no accessory shoe.

given the limitations of the microMV format, a smaller camcorder is the only reason to use it. and a tiny camcorder is what sony has delivered and that's why this is a four star product for me. but if you can stand a slightly bigger camcorder, check out other miniDV options. these are more affordable, better supported, and almost as portable.

i hope this helps your buying decision. peace.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great convenience
So many capabilities and image quality in such a tiny device is unbelievable. Incredible. And on top of it, the usual connectivity and user-friendliness of all Sony electronics (the bluetooth technology is not that relevant but a fun extra gadget) ... Read more


3. Sony DCRIP1 MicroMV Handycam Camcorder w/10x Optical Zoom
by Sony
list price: $1,299.99
our price: $1,199.94
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0000CG091
Catlog: Photography
Manufacturer: Sony
Sales Rank: 3282
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Features

  • Pocketable, 8-ounce MicroMV camcorder and digital still camera--the size of a deck of cards
  • 10x optical zoom lens (digital zoom to 120x) with Super SteadyShot image stabilizer
  • 2-inch rotating precision SwivelScreen hybrid touch panel LCD
  • Memory Stick Pro slot, wireless remote control, and Handycam Station
  • NP-FF51 InfoLithium Rechargeable Battery

4. Sony DCRIP5 MicroMV Digital Camcorder w/ 2.5" Hybrid LCD
by Sony
list price: $1,299.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B0000636RZ
Catlog: Photography
Manufacturer: Sony
Sales Rank: 5024
Average Customer Review: 2.72 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Amazon.com Product Description

Featuring a compact, vertically aligned body to go along with its potent 10x optical zoom, the DCR-IP5 is the first of two camcorders featuring the unique new recording format MicroMV, which records using the same format used to encode DVDs: MPEG-2.

Lens and CCD
The two central components of any video camera (or digital still camera) are its lens and CCD (the image sensor). This Sony model builds around a 10x optical zoom, which is paired with Super SteadyShot image stabilization to cut down on the shakes and jitters common to most amateur video footage. The CCD sports a pixel count of 680,000 pixels--great for video--that translates the image into around 500 lines of resolution.

Size
The size of the DCR-IP5 is actually one of the features that Sony is really excited about, and it's easy to understand why. The device is extraordinarily small; it's somewhere on the order of a half-inch to an inch smaller in its dimensions than comparable models. That's quite a hefty reduction, making the IP5 small enough to fit in a pocket. Because of the small size of the camcorder, its 2.5-inch LCD becomes comparatively larger than it would otherwise be.

Cables and Connectors
Despite the small size of the IP5, there are a number of audio and video inputs and outputs, making it a very flexible and capable machine. Most intriguingly, besides S-video, there are also composite video in/outputs--composite video provides the highest level of quality in home theater setups. For audio, stereo in/outputs are included. Of course, in any digital camcorder, you should expect to find an IEEE 1394 port, also known as FireWire or iLink, which the IP5 provides.

Included with the DCR-IP5 are a wireless remote, an AC-L20 power adapter, NP-FF50 InfoLithium battery, two AA batteries, iLink Cable (four-pin to four-pin), AV cable, lens cap, wrist strap, and a software CD-ROM (software is Windows only). ... Read more

Features

  • MicroMV camcorder
  • 10x optical, 120x digital, zoom with Super SteadyShot image stabilization
  • 2.5 inch color LCD monitor and color EVF
  • Records in MPEG2 video format--the same format used in DVDs
  • Features composite and S-Video outputs

Reviews (18)

5-0 out of 5 stars Information Update
I am writing this information here because I found the reviews of the DCRIP-5 at Amazon.com's site helpful when I was considering the purchase of the camcorder. It is a great camcorder because it overcomes the one obstacle that people encounter when they want to record something in their life on video tape. That obstacle is the bulkiness of most camcorders, which makes using them a major preduction. The DCRIP-5 fits in a pocket. You can carry it with you anywhere with no hassle at all. It is about the size of a digital still camera.
Today I installed Pinnacle's Studio 8DV, the software that Sony recommends for use with their Micros DV camcorders. It works great and there is an update available at the Pinnacle web site to allow Micro DV users to capture video directly from the camcorder.
I recommend this combination, the DCRIP-5 and Pinnacle's Studio 8DV to anyone who wants no hassle video taping and computer editing.

1-0 out of 5 stars What a WASTE of Money!
Bought it last year! Nice and small, but even Pinnacle Studio 8 can't handle the compression. No voice, can't burn to DVD, blah, blah, blah. You name it I had a problem with it! And now, come to find out, Sony has stopped production AND will no longer pursue MicroMV. They are moving back to MiniDV! ARGH! Pinnacle won't support their product any longer with this compatibility issue and Sony abandons it.

I bought the Canon Elura 50! Great with stills and video. Inexpensive, only 1 ounce heavier and about the same size!

As my wife called it...... I bought Beta instead of VHS! Never be an early adopter.

Mark

1-0 out of 5 stars If you want to burn DVDs with your video, avoid this.
I have bought a lot of Sony products over the years so when I was in the market for a camcorder I foolishly just picked this up without researching it. After recording four tapes of my one year old I tried making a DVD and after 20-30 hours and using 3 programs, including Sony's Movieshaker (constant crashes) I have still been unsuccessful. I have just ordered a well reviewed Panasonic camera in DV. MicroMV is a terrible product with zero support from Sony. I won't be buying Sony again.

1-0 out of 5 stars Warning: This Thing Does Not Work With Anything
Sony made it sound like these MicroMV shoots in .mpeg format which you can edit directly. It is in .mmv format. There absolutely no software that will edit .mmv except the crappy one that came with it.

I have one. Here's how it works. After shooting, you have to download via MovieShaker, the software that comes with it. Then, export each clip via MovieShaker to DVI or .mpeg files. Then, use whatever editing software you use to open the exported files. It takes more than twice the time and twice the hard drive space if you want to keep the original .mmv files. I had to keep my original .mmv files because by the time I'm done, the audio would be off-track. After using it for a while, I ended up just downloading the shots to ... yeah, VCR!

Quicktime can read the .mmv files, so it is obvious that those .mmv files are in fact .mpeg files that Sony claims, but NO editing software that can downloand and read DV files and .mpeg files can recognize .mmv files. It is obvious that this incompatability is deliberate.

Avoid wasting your time doing double work. Avoid microMV at all cost.

1-0 out of 5 stars Please sign petition requesting Sony support MicroMV on Mac
5 stars when they support Macs

Please sign the petition http://www.petitiononline.com/osxmicmv/ requesting that Sony support MicroMV camcorders on Mac OS X. ... Read more


5. Sony DCRIP55 MicroMV 1.0-MegaPixel CCD Bluetooth Camcorder
by Sony
list price: $1,499.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: B00006IIU3
Catlog: Photography
Manufacturer: Sony
Sales Rank: 4287
Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars
US | Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan

Amazon.com Product Description

Sony's FireWire-equipped DCR-IP55 MicroMV Handycam camcorder features a 1-megapixel CCD sensor and offers 520 lines of horizontal video resolution and still image resolution of 1,152 x 864. It also offers a foldout handle for use in shooting video on an angle, above a crowd, or when following fast-paced sports.

The DCR-IP55 boasts Carl Zeiss optics with an advanced multilayer coating. It features a 10x optical and 120x precision digital zoom, SteadyShot picture stabilization, and a super NightShot infrared system for recording in total darkness--new to MicroMV Handycam camcorders.

In addition to video, the DCR-IP55 offers enhanced digital still photo features, including intelligent pop-up flash and hologram AF--an autofocus feature designed to achieve accurate subject focus with minimal contrast in dark conditions. Through an MPEG movie AD mode, the DCR-IP55 also allows you to capture MPEG1 compressed video and audio for up to 60 seconds directly to Memory Stick media in four different quality modes: light, standard, fine, and super fine.

The MicroMV tape is 70 percent smaller than a MiniDV tape and provides up to 60 minutes of digital video footage. It has a 64K memory chip that allows for a multisearch function to access different recorded sections of the tape as one would a DVD, creating a thumbnail image of each recorded scene on the tape. Additionally, whenever a MicroMV cassette is inserted into the camcorder or the VCR mode is used, cassette information is automatically displayed on the LCD showing the first and last date of use, how much recording space remains, and titling capability so the user can title the videotape.

Connect to your PC or Mac via a superfast IEEE 1394 port (also called FireWire). You can also connect wirelessly to a Bluetooth-enabled PC. ... Read more

Features

  • Sleek, 1-megapixel MicroMV camcorder and digital still camera
  • 10x optical zoom lens (digital zoom to 120x) with Super SteadyShot image stabilizer
  • 2.5-inch rotating precision SwivelScreen hybrid touch panel LCD
  • Memory Stick slot, remote control, pop-up flash, and Super NightShot forshooting in low lighting
  • NP-FF50 InfoLithium Rechargeable Battery

Reviews (10)

5-0 out of 5 stars Size versus video quality
In a nutshell, the major issue with the IP55 is the small trade-off of video quality versus size.

Mind you, you're getting by far one of the smallest video cameras on the market, with all the camcorder features you'd expect in a larger model. However, its only major limitation in my eyes is the video quality.

Regardless, it's still very impressive. In all my use of it, the only thing that bugs me is the slow autofocus. That's it. I can only tell the video quality issues when compared side by side with the TRV50, but after converting to DVD there's little difference between the two.

MicroMV isn't a hard format to handle once you get it converted to the MOV format. To do this you need Quicktime Pro 5 (Quicktime Pro 6 doesn't work), which Sony should've bundled with it. Simply open your MMV file in Quicktime, select Save As, and save it as a MOV. Load it into Premiere or whatever video editing software you like and away you go, no other issues to speak of. I've successfully edited my videos using a variety of programs, so don't let the MicroMV format put you off.

Quibbles aside, the best bit of owning the IP55 is when you pull it out of the case (which, incidently, is the size of a regular camera case, not a camcorder). You can't beat the wow factor.

2-0 out of 5 stars After Sales Service Very Poor
This camera seemed ideal for my needs and although I spend most of my time in Europe I opted for an NTSC format as I know that I am able to access this format in Europe whereas I cannot access PAL in the US, thus it being much more universal.

I bought this camera and after 40 days it developed a fault. I contacted Sony Service Centre in London, who after keeping it for 5 weeks explained that they could not repair NTSC Models in the UK and I would have to send it to the US for repair. I suggested that they should do that but no. I returned to the US and took the camera to one of their service centres who said that I would have to pay $216 labour charges as it was now over 90 days old.
After a great deal of hassle they eventually agreed to give me a work order to have this charge waived. I then sent it to Sony in PA and although I have been informed that it has been repaired I still am awaiting its return over 6 months after purchase. Just be sure you realise that the 12 month warranty only applies to parts, the labour warranty is 90 days, it is in the small print but easily overlooked. This review may not be helpful to everyone but if one person is helped then great.

1-0 out of 5 stars 5 Stars if it worked on a mac
Please sign the petition at http://www.petitiononline.com/osxmicmv/ requesting Sony support this camera (and other MicroMV camcorders) on Mac OS X.

This is a great camcorder, but it is impossible to use because you cannot get the video onto your Mac. For those of you that use a PC for video editing (yeah, right...) and don't mind using Sony's proprietary Movie Shaker program to do your editing instead of something like Premier (again, yeah, right), you will find this camera wonderful. But for the rest of us, Sony needs to take steps to open up this format or support the camcorder on the most popular digital video platform (Mac).

3-0 out of 5 stars Caution! Not compatible with Apple Computers
I was about to buy this little beauty when I found out Sony's MicroMV system (compressing in MPEG2) is not compatible with Apple's iMovie and other editing software. The editing software that comes with the camcorder (Movie Shaker) is PC only. So if you are a Mac user, save yourself a lot of hassle and prefer a (Sony?) MiniDV camcorder.

Apart from this issue, I guess it is a great buy. If I would use a PC, it would be on the top of my wishlist.

5-0 out of 5 stars This is a tiny, very cool camcorder doesn't mind limitations
Pros: Stylish and amazingly compact; innovative design; built-in flash and low-power video light; flexible low-light shooting.

Cons: Limited choice in editing apps for MicroMV video format; lens has fairly narrow angle of view; no accessory shoe or external microphone jack.

It has been a week after I bought this camcorder and so far it is great. The super night vision comes really handy if you go on camping or some other interesting dark places. The controls are very easy to reach and the picture quality is really good. Some people say that they do not like the cassette to be ejected from bottom, but I have no problems with it. I think it is fine. The movie shaker software that comes with the camcorder is not a very professional one. It can handle basic editing and it has great effects. Very easy to use and to set up. You can export the movies you capture in different formats such as real audio, quicktime, etc. It really takes a long time to export though. It is the same with other digital cameras. So, it shouldn't be a concern for you to decide if you should buy the camera or not. You can use the network function to email the photos to a website.If you have a bluetooth cell phone, it is very easy. But if you don't have one, you will have to buy the sony bluetooth adapter for the camcorder which costs about $199. It is better to buy a new cell phone than buying the adapter. This little device is top of the line. It has manual focus for better capturing. It has a smart flash which pops-up automatically when you hit the photo shoot button half-way down. One downside of the camera is that it does not have an input for external microphone. But the built in one does a good very good job. All in all, you should not miss this camcorder. It is affordable, small, cute, and it is SONY. You would never mind carrying it to everywhere you go. And if you are a guy, you'll make a lot of "female" friends. You'll become the center of attention. GRAB ONE! HAVE FUN! ... Read more


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