- Relatively high video quality, high optical zoom
- Sound capture less than reliable at mid-long range, interface can be difficult and confusing
Sony's DCR-DVD708 is an impressive camera. Despite its clunky interface and shortcomings in sound capture, it delivers great video quality and a fantastic 25x zoom for its price.
Price$ 879.00 (AUD)
Sony's latest mini-DVD camcorder is a respectable offering, and one which does justice to the mini-DVD format. Impressive video quality is supported by a comfortable and lightweight design, as well as the ability to very quickly film, finalise, and have a DVD ready for playback. Let down only by its somewhat disjointed and unresponsive interface, the DCR-DVD708 is nevertheless a great product.
We found the video quality on the DVD708 to be above average, with fairly accurate colour representation and low noise levels for a single CCD camera. As with most cameras, it suffers in low light settings, where colours can often look washed out or faded, but performance under fluorescent lighting or in bright sunlight is strong. Sony has included a feature to help reduce this, but quality is still best in bright light. The 25x optical zoom is quite useful, and gives the camera a great range. Digital zoom can take this level up to 2000x, although stabilisation and video quality suffer noticeably at levels that high, to the point where it's almost useless.
Sound quality isn't fantastic, but Sony has included support for 5.1 surround sound, allowing users to record disks which can then be played back on compatible systems. Still, the inbuilt microphone's range was less than impressive, with voices and noises recorded more than about four or five metres away being almost inaudible on the camera, even at maximum volume. Fortunately, support for wireless microphones has been included, and this is definitely a welcome and very useful addition for those willing to pay the extra price for them.
The camera itself is well designed, if a little unoriginal. After years of camcorder development, however, there's nothing wrong with sticking to what works. Buttons are well laid out and easy to reach as the camera sits comfortably in the right hand. The only downside with the design is the 2.7in LCD screen, which controls the menu system through a clunky and somewhat unresponsive touch screen interface. The addition of a few simple buttons below the screen to control the interface would have been an improvement.
Nevertheless, all the necessary controls are there. While editing on the camera isn't possible, disks can be finalised and watched on DVD players in a matter of minutes, or transferred to a computer to be edited.
Despite a slightly irritating interface and the need for a microphone for reliable sound capture at mid-long distance, the DCR-DVD708 is an impressive camcorder, delivering relatively high quality video and the ability to quickly film and play movies.
Join the PC World newsletter!
Everki ContemPRO Roll Top Laptop Backpack
Epson WorkForce ET-4550
Smart LED Bulb LB130
Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit router
Samsung portable 1TB T3 drive
Epson EcoTank Expression ET-2500
Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop
UE Boom 2 Bluetooth speaker
Epson WorkForce DS-360W
Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive
Lexar® Portable SSD
Acer Swift 7
3SIXT Ultra HD Sports Action Camera
Belkin MIXIT Metallic Lightning to USB Cable
Huawei Mate 9
Logitech G403 Prodigy mouse
Google Daydream VR headset
HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450
Garmin Fenix Chronos smartwatch
Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive
Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards
HP Pavilion x360 13”
Dell XPS 13 laptop
Surface Pro 4
Dell Inspiron 5000 series 2-in-1
Blade 28 backpack by Arc’teryx
Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Huawei Mate 9 full in-depth smartphone review
- 2 ZTE Axon 7 review: Is ZTE dumping old stock on Australia?
- 3 Oppo R9s smartphone full review
- 4 Huawei Nova Plus smartphone review
- 5 Google Pixel XL full, in-depth smartphone review: Phones just got smarter
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
- FBI faces lawsuit because it's stayed mum on iPhone 5c hack
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.
- How to quit Pokemon Go (or to start enjoying it again)
- Huawei Mate 9 full in-depth smartphone review
- Time to ditch Foxtel and the iQ3: How to replace Foxtel packages with cheaper alternatives
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
- CCERP Business Analyst (Time Capture/ Management) - Contract - Sydney CBDNSW
- TPe-Learning Developer (Captivate 8)VIC
- CCTest AnalystQLD
- CCSenior Project Manager - ApplicationsNSW
- TPSolution Architect - Transport DomainVIC
- TPProduct Owner - Cloud SolutionsQLD
- TPProject CoordinatorNSW
- FTSenior Full Stack .Net Developer - Internet of ThingsNSW
- FTJunior Software Engineer - Adelaide Based (PV, NV2 or NV1 required)ACT
- TPBusiness Analyst AO7QLD
- CCWicked Front-End DeveloperQLD
- TPAgile CoachNSW
- FTLevel 3 Support AnalystVIC
- FTHead of ApplicationsVIC
- TPOrganisational Change ManagerQLD
- TPTechnical Business Analyst - DigitalQLD
- FTSenior Software EngineerVIC
- FTOracle Forms PL/SQL Analyst ProgrammerQLD
- FTSenior Project Manager - PERMANENTACT
- CCUnix Systems AdministratorNSW
- CCIT Procurement OfficerNSW
- CCMidrange ProvisioningNSW
- CCBusiness Test Lead - BRT/UATNSW
- FTMid-Level Software Engineer x 2 - Adelaide Based (PV, NV2 or NV1 required)VIC
- CCSenior Systems EngineerNSW