I have to admit, I’ve always preferred taking photos to shooting videos. Photos are much easier to edit, and you can compose photos faster than taking a video. Plus, photos are easier to control–you point the camera at a subject, make sure it’s focused and click away; while videos are more likely to be shaky, noisy and blurry if you’re not careful. Maybe that’s why I like Instagram more than Snapchat (or Instagram Stories), though I can definitely see that more and more people are shifting to videos now.
I mean, I can see why it is getting popular. Gadgets with video cameras, and video cameras themselves are becoming more affordable. You don’t need to save up for several months to buy one, and most are compatible with your phone, your tablet, laptop and computer. And, it is now easier to edit videos, thanks to the many apps and programs you can easily download (most of them are free, too).
Come to think of it, videos are pretty cool. I mean, if you watch a video of an old beach trip and browse through photos from the same trip, you will feel more nostalgic with the video. The video is more likely to capture the moment so you remember what you were feeling at the time the video was taken. Browsing thru photos can do that, but it wont bring back memories the way videos can.
I recently discovered a love for taking videos when Sony sent me their new HDR-PJ675. To be honest, I haven’t held a camcorder since my college days (I remember, it was a Sony, too, and I used it for my Introduction to Organizational Video class, and later my thesis). My old camcorder was way bigger than the one I have now, and sooooo much more complicated to use. It used tape (HDV or high definition video on cassette tape) that required me to edit the old fashioned way: using VHS (I have a headache just thinking about it), so yes, it is definitely jurassic compared to the beauty I have now. The design is still very similar to the old one I had though, which is one of the things I like about it. It is like I’m using my old camcorder, but it is so much smarter, faster and simpler.
I am definitely no techie, but I know when I like a gadget (I use it all the time). I’ve had the Sony HDR-PJ675 for several weeks now and I am happy to report that I’ve taken A LOT of videos with it (mostly of Tristan and our trips). I like that it is a completely different gadget from my SLR camera and phone–it is really for taking videos, though I can also take great photos with it. I am still learning how to edit videos, but so far I have great material and its all thanks to this camcorder. I wanted to share the 10 things I love about this camera, which I hope will help you decide whether or not you need one in your life. Here are 10 reasons why you should buy a Sony HDR-PJ675:
1.) The camcorder has a nice compact design, and it is easy to use. Although it is said to be a few ounces heavier than the more basic models of Sony, I didn’t really notice the weight. This is definitely not an issue for me as it felt solid and quite stable, especially with the handstrap. It also has a USB 2.0 cable right in the handstrap which makes it easy to charge when you forget to bring your cable.
2.) It has a great LCD display. The camera has a 3.0-inch Clear Photo Plus LCD display, which makes it a joy to take videos and preview your shots. It is also touch screen, so there are just a few buttons next to the screen (not like my old camcorder which had so many confusing buttons).
3.) An awesome feature: it has a built-in LED projector. On the opposite side of the camera’s screen door is a small LED projector that allows you to watch videos at a reduced resolution of 640 x 360 at 25 lumens. This makes it super easy to view your videos without a television/monitor–all you need is a white wall. I tried it when I was at the beach with my family and they were so amazed with this feature.
4.) Videos are captured at 1080p/60p at 50 Mbps. I asked my husband about this (he is the most techie person I know) and he says it is pretty impressive. The videos are all high definition, and are awesome to watch if you have a nice television. Obviously I don’t know much about these things, but I saw it for myself when we connected it to our TV. The video quality is amazing! My shots are another story though, I still need to practice and have a long way to go before they look professional. Anyway, the videos are just for fun!
5.) It has the ideal format for easy editing. The format of this camcorder uses MP4, which apparently makes video editing super easy. I did my research and read it is the ideal formal to use if you want to see the best video quality possible. I am no director/video editor, but I definitely appreciate this feature.
6.) The camera has a sensor that makes it great for low light conditions. This is tried and tested. I used the camera to take night shots and the videos came out pretty great. The Sony HDR-PJ675 is equipped with a back-illuminated Exmor R CMOS sensor that helps you shoot in low light conditions.
7.) It has a feature that helps make your videos smooth/less shaky. The camera has a Balanced Optical SteadyShot image stabilization feature that makes sure your videos are smooth and steady even when you zoom all the way. You get 30x optical zoom which can optionally extend to 60x Clear Image Zoom, which is pretty good for a small camcorder.
8.) It takes great photos. This is a plus so I don’t need to bring out my SLR/phone when I shoot videos. The photos captured are 9.2-megapixels, and you can take stills while recording video.
9.) It has built-in 32 GB of internal memory. This is a big plus for me. Memory always wins! This is a huge upgrade from my old camcorder that used tape lol! Oh, and it has an SD card slot so you can take videos ALL DAY and you wont run out of memory.
10.) Transferring files/sharing is made easy. This camcorder has wireless capabilities! If you use NFC (Sony uses it in all of its smartphones and tablets), it is easy to connect wirelessly to the camera. All you have to do is download the free PlayMemories Mobile app to connect (it also works for iOS and Android). Also, it enables real-time streaming to the Ustream service–a new feature worth exploring.