Sony HC7 or Panasonic HDC SD1?


I'm looking to record a holiday in hi-def for posterity and am a total newb to camcorders. I've been looking at Sony HC3 / 7 and the Panasonic HDC SD1 and am undecided. I like the fact that the Panasonic has 3 ccd's and an optical image stabiliser, but am not too keen on having to fork out for SD memory cards. I'm also a bit worried about the AVCHD format - is it very lossy? I've read that it's still in its infancy and a bit of a 'mare to edit.

I've read conflicting reports about the Sony HC7's low-light performance relative to the HC3 (and can't find very much at all about the HC5?).

The Panasonic is probably top-weight budget-wise for me, any advice on what to buy very gratefully received :)


Distinguished Member
The AVCHD format is more compressed - though you could say the compression is more "clever", so in theory the quality can be as good or better than MPEG2 used by HDV. But at this stage the camcorders (including the SD1) produce more compression noise than HDV. And it is a challange to edit, at least for now.

I prefer the HDV models. The HC7 also has optical image stabilisation. Or consider the Canon HV20, which overall looks the best of the current batch of consumer HDV cams.

You can read reviews and comparisons of these 3 models here


Distinguished Member
...The AVCHD format is more compressed - And it is a challange to edit, at least for now.....
My thoughts precisely

I prefer the HDV models.
If you can get past the "tape is Ancient technology " mindset, The HDV models are it..
They currently offer the best quality for the least money on a fairly easy to obtain and affordable media and format... which is editable .. right here right now:)


Anyone got any reliable info regarding Canon HV20 stock availability? I'm jetting off on the 29th of April, and quite a few sites are listing May for availability :(

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