Sony Handycam Digital Camcorder - 2.5" LCD - CCD - Metallic Silver

1 Megapixel Image - 0.7 Megapixel Video - 10x Optical Zoom - 120x Digital Zoom - Electronic IS - 8 MB Memory Stick Included - MPN: DCRPC101
Product Details
Description
The DCR-PC101 MiniDV Handycam Camcorder combines improved battery capacity, megapixel image quality, MPEG EX movie capability, 8MB MS and USB streaming without compromising the compact and functional design of its award-winning predecessors. Weighing in at only one pound and four ounces, the new DCR-PC101 doesn't come up short on features. With a 10x optical/120x digital zoom and a 1/4.7, 1 megapixel CCD imager, this lightweight MiniDV Handycam Camcorder offers stunning digital video quality and digital still capture capability to Memory Stick Media. Additionally, the new camcorder features Carl Zeiss optics, a precision color viewfinder and a 2.5 precision SwivelScreen LCD with touchscreen controls, all in one tiny package.
Quick Glance
Recording Media Tape Media, Memory Card, MiniDV
LCD Screen Size 2.5 in
Interface Connection 1 x USB, 1 x 4-pin IEEE 1394, 1 x S-Video In/Out, 1 x LANC, 1 x Headphone, 1 x Microphone, 1 x DC Power In
Image Stabilization Electronic
normalized-Optical Zoom 10
normalized-Weight 20
User Reviews
4 Star Review   By member perigee - Sep 25, 2003   

Strengths: Portability, optics, battery life, low motor noise, multiple I/O ports, image stabilization

Weakness: LCD in daylight, microphone pickup, slow autofocus

This is a great first camcorder that goes everywhere and records generally high-quality video. Outdoor video is fine, but indoor video is monochromatic and noisy in low light. The 1MP stills don't compare to a dedicated digital camera, but are adequate for travel and field situations with the ability save more than 200 images at the highest resolution on an inexpensive 128MB memory stick. It records low resolution stills on tape for special effects, but the MPEG1 video on the memory stick is too low quality to be useful. I'm not bothered so much by the bottom-loading tape transport. With practice, remounting the camera adds only a few seconds to tape changes. The plastic case shows some surface cracks after a year and a half of rough handling, but seems to be holding up OK along with the terminal covers. I like the 270° LCD rotation, display blanking button and tactile zoom control, features that apparently are more limited on the new DCR-PC105. The analog-in/digital out feature is handy for converting VHS tapes. The USB and firewire ports fully integrate the camera with a PC. I rarely use the LCD menus, except for spot meter and spot focus. I never use fader or other functions that can be applied in post-production. With VF-only operation, the standard battery provides a good two hours recording time. The optical zoom is very nice, but digital zoom isn't useful beyond 2x. This camera has been a great tool for home video, and I seldom make trips without it.

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3 Star Review   By member MichaelAH - Apr 17, 2003   

Strengths: Nice size and weight, excellent picture quality, and battery life is very good. For most basic functions this is a great camcorder

Weakness: Sony made some VERY odd design decisions. Perhaps the worst is the location of the button to change tapes. It is on the bottom of the unit and if you use a tripod it is not accessable. (cont)

I was recording my kid's performance and needed to change tapes. I had to 1) remove the camera from the tripod, 2) remove the screw-on tripod attachments, 3) change tapes, 3) reattache the tripod attachement, and 5) reattach the camcorder to the tripod. It takes FAR too long. Another feature I use a lot is the fade. Instead of putting this feature on a button, it requires 5 steps on the touchscreen. It is VERY inconvenient and almost impossible to do without shaking the camera so you can fade out. In bright sunlight, where I would rather use the viewfinder, this is also a pain. This is a good machine which was messed up by some bad engineering. If you don't fade or use a tripod, you will probably love it. If you do, you will be frustrated.

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4 Star Review   By member sclark900 - Oct 14, 2002   

Strengths: Size - SO small and extremely portable Great outdoor video quality Comfortable to hold... once you get used to the controls

Weakness: Sound leaves a lot to be desired Low light video is marginal Cheezy plastic door covering the dv in/out

Bottom line, this is a great camera. If you are looking for something small that is easy to take anywhere, look no further... especially if you'll be doing the majority of your video outside. Video in good light is awesome. The ergonomics and controls of the camera take some getting used to, but once you have, it's great. If size and portability isn't a factor, you may want to go w/ the TRV27 - save $300+, better sound out of the box, and more intuitive controls.

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5 Star Review   By member rgwaz - Sep 24, 2002   

Strengths: Great video quality, easy to hold for a box style camcorder, easy to use, very small.

Weakness: cheap plastic cover for DV and AC input will likely break

If you are looking for a small mini DV camcorder be sure to check this model out. I have tried most of the mini box style camcorders and this one seems to fit my hand the best. The Carl Zeiss lense is fantastic and the vidoe quality super. Still pictures are reasonable at 1mega pixel, but I would suggest getting a seperate still camera for better photos. I was able to use 90% of the features without using the supplied manual due the clever touch screen controls. The screen hides finger prints well (something I was concerned about before getting the camera). I have owned several video cameras and this one is very easy to use! Video cameras get left behind if they are too big. This will fit in a very large pocket, but a purse or small pouch is better. I haven't tried the digital still upload, so I can't comment on that; however, I was editing videos in less than 5 minutes using my MAC G3 and i-movie. The editing worked perfectly. The camera also has Super V, DV and USB interfaces. Great connectivity for a super small camcorder. You can get a smaller camera by going to the Sony Micro DV line but you will lose compatibility with most digital editing software. My only complaint is the delicate terminal cover for the DV and AC input. I think I am going to accidently break it every time I open it.

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2 Star Review   By member Digifan - Aug 30, 2002   

Strengths: Great features, easy to perate, and good picture quality.

Weakness: High price, poor tech support, still image upload problem...

I've just purchased Sony DCR-PC101, great size, great picture, and easy to operate by using the touch screen panel, but there is a big problm with uploading the still jpg images. I can't upload the still image from Sony memory stick as Sony manual instructed, but I can do it by using other brand memory stick reader. After several tests(tested with other PCs and memory stick readers), we believe there is Sony USB driver problem or the hardware(DCR-PC101) problem. I've returned this camera, because Sony can't solve this problem.

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Product Details
Description
The DCR-PC101 MiniDV Handycam Camcorder combines improved battery capacity, megapixel image quality, MPEG EX movie capability, 8MB MS and USB streaming without compromising the compact and functional design of its award-winning predecessors. Weighing in at only one pound and four ounces, the new DCR-PC101 doesn't come up short on features. With a 10x optical/120x digital zoom and a 1/4.7, 1 megapixel CCD imager, this lightweight MiniDV Handycam Camcorder offers stunning digital video quality and digital still capture capability to Memory Stick Media. Additionally, the new camcorder features Carl Zeiss optics, a precision color viewfinder and a 2.5 precision SwivelScreen LCD with touchscreen controls, all in one tiny package.
Quick Glance
Recording Media Tape Media, Memory Card, MiniDV
LCD Screen Size 2.5 in
Interface Connection 1 x USB, 1 x 4-pin IEEE 1394, 1 x S-Video In/Out, 1 x LANC, 1 x Headphone, 1 x Microphone, 1 x DC Power In
Image Stabilization Electronic
normalized-Optical Zoom 10
normalized-Weight 20
Summary
Product Title Sony Handycam Digital Camcorder - 2.5" LCD - CCD - Metallic Silver
Manufacturer Sony
Power Score 3.6 | 5 Reviews
Image Processor
Image Sensor: CCD
Image Sensor Quantity: 1
Image Sensor Size: 1/4.7"
Lens Features
Optical Zoom: 10 X
Digital Zoom: 120x
Filter Diameter: 30 mm
Video Recording
Minimum Lux Rating: 7 lux
Dimensions
Dimensions: 4.13" Height x 2.17" Width x 3.90" Depth
Weight: 1.25 lbs
Warranty
Warranty Information: 1 Year Limited
More Info
URL: Manufacturer Link
Additional Specifications
Category: Video Camera
Viewfinder Type: Electronic
Product Series: DCR
Product Line: Handycam
Effective Video Resolution: 0.7 Megapixel
Shortest Shutter Speed: 1/4000 Second
Longest Shutter Speed: 1/4 Second
Total Camcorder Resolution: 1.1 Megapixel
Microphone Technology: Electret Condenser
Brand Name: Sony
Effective Image Resolution: 1 Megapixel
Maximum Image Resolution: 1152 x 864
Exposure Control: Program Manual
White Balance Modes: Auto Outdoor Indoor Hold
Maximum Video Lines: 520
Description: 0
Class: Audio Visual Accessory
Frequency Band: Super NightShot and Color Slow Shutter 16:9 Mode USB Streaming Stamina Power Management System Progressive Shutter System 14 Bit DXP A/D Conversion Photo Mode Photo Save Playback Zoom Print Mark Digital Program Editing Picture Effect Modes Interval/Frame Recording Index Titling Intelligent Accessory Shoe AE Bracketing Burst Mode
Memory Card Type Include: Memory Stick
User Reviews
4 Star Review   By member perigee - Sep 25, 2003   

Strengths: Portability, optics, battery life, low motor noise, multiple I/O ports, image stabilization

Weakness: LCD in daylight, microphone pickup, slow autofocus

This is a great first camcorder that goes everywhere and records generally high-quality video. Outdoor video is fine, but indoor video is monochromatic and noisy in low light. The 1MP stills don't compare to a dedicated digital camera, but are adequate for travel and field situations with the ability save more than 200 images at the highest resolution on an inexpensive 128MB memory stick. It records low resolution stills on tape for special effects, but the MPEG1 video on the memory stick is too low quality to be useful. I'm not bothered so much by the bottom-loading tape transport. With practice, remounting the camera adds only a few seconds to tape changes. The plastic case shows some surface cracks after a year and a half of rough handling, but seems to be holding up OK along with the terminal covers. I like the 270° LCD rotation, display blanking button and tactile zoom control, features that apparently are more limited on the new DCR-PC105. The analog-in/digital out feature is handy for converting VHS tapes. The USB and firewire ports fully integrate the camera with a PC. I rarely use the LCD menus, except for spot meter and spot focus. I never use fader or other functions that can be applied in post-production. With VF-only operation, the standard battery provides a good two hours recording time. The optical zoom is very nice, but digital zoom isn't useful beyond 2x. This camera has been a great tool for home video, and I seldom make trips without it.

Was this review helpful to you?  Yes or No ( Report this as inappropriate )

3 Star Review   By member MichaelAH - Apr 17, 2003   

Strengths: Nice size and weight, excellent picture quality, and battery life is very good. For most basic functions this is a great camcorder

Weakness: Sony made some VERY odd design decisions. Perhaps the worst is the location of the button to change tapes. It is on the bottom of the unit and if you use a tripod it is not accessable. (cont)

I was recording my kid's performance and needed to change tapes. I had to 1) remove the camera from the tripod, 2) remove the screw-on tripod attachments, 3) change tapes, 3) reattache the tripod attachement, and 5) reattach the camcorder to the tripod. It takes FAR too long. Another feature I use a lot is the fade. Instead of putting this feature on a button, it requires 5 steps on the touchscreen. It is VERY inconvenient and almost impossible to do without shaking the camera so you can fade out. In bright sunlight, where I would rather use the viewfinder, this is also a pain. This is a good machine which was messed up by some bad engineering. If you don't fade or use a tripod, you will probably love it. If you do, you will be frustrated.

0% of readers found this review helpful.

Was this review helpful to you?  Yes or No ( Report this as inappropriate )

4 Star Review   By member sclark900 - Oct 14, 2002   

Strengths: Size - SO small and extremely portable Great outdoor video quality Comfortable to hold... once you get used to the controls

Weakness: Sound leaves a lot to be desired Low light video is marginal Cheezy plastic door covering the dv in/out

Bottom line, this is a great camera. If you are looking for something small that is easy to take anywhere, look no further... especially if you'll be doing the majority of your video outside. Video in good light is awesome. The ergonomics and controls of the camera take some getting used to, but once you have, it's great. If size and portability isn't a factor, you may want to go w/ the TRV27 - save $300+, better sound out of the box, and more intuitive controls.

Was this review helpful to you?  Yes or No ( Report this as inappropriate )

5 Star Review   By member rgwaz - Sep 24, 2002   

Strengths: Great video quality, easy to hold for a box style camcorder, easy to use, very small.

Weakness: cheap plastic cover for DV and AC input will likely break

If you are looking for a small mini DV camcorder be sure to check this model out. I have tried most of the mini box style camcorders and this one seems to fit my hand the best. The Carl Zeiss lense is fantastic and the vidoe quality super. Still pictures are reasonable at 1mega pixel, but I would suggest getting a seperate still camera for better photos. I was able to use 90% of the features without using the supplied manual due the clever touch screen controls. The screen hides finger prints well (something I was concerned about before getting the camera). I have owned several video cameras and this one is very easy to use! Video cameras get left behind if they are too big. This will fit in a very large pocket, but a purse or small pouch is better. I haven't tried the digital still upload, so I can't comment on that; however, I was editing videos in less than 5 minutes using my MAC G3 and i-movie. The editing worked perfectly. The camera also has Super V, DV and USB interfaces. Great connectivity for a super small camcorder. You can get a smaller camera by going to the Sony Micro DV line but you will lose compatibility with most digital editing software. My only complaint is the delicate terminal cover for the DV and AC input. I think I am going to accidently break it every time I open it.

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2 Star Review   By member Digifan - Aug 30, 2002   

Strengths: Great features, easy to perate, and good picture quality.

Weakness: High price, poor tech support, still image upload problem...

I've just purchased Sony DCR-PC101, great size, great picture, and easy to operate by using the touch screen panel, but there is a big problm with uploading the still jpg images. I can't upload the still image from Sony memory stick as Sony manual instructed, but I can do it by using other brand memory stick reader. After several tests(tested with other PCs and memory stick readers), we believe there is Sony USB driver problem or the hardware(DCR-PC101) problem. I've returned this camera, because Sony can't solve this problem.

100% of readers found this review helpful.

Was this review helpful to you?  Yes or No ( Report this as inappropriate )

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