15th Jan 2006

Sony DCR-TRV18 MiniDV Handycam Camcorder

Unnecessary replacement of the DCR-TRV17. Cheap cam offering decent video quality. DCR-TRV18 includes a 1/4″ 680,000 pixel CCD (horizontal resolution of up to 500 lines) coupled with superb Carl Zeiss lens. Video quality is worse than with little more expensive TRV25 and TRV27 models having 690,000 effective pixels and up to 520 lines of horizontal resolution.

10x optical zoom and 120x digital zoom are usual for this type of camcorders.

Reliable autofocus and easy manual focusing. The zoom control is a little complicated, but not a problem. For really good zoom control you should buy Sony wired remote control.
Sony DCR-TRV18 MiniDV Handycam Camcorder
Although the camcorder lacks optical image stabilization, Sony’s Super Steadyshot image stabilizer works well enough.

This camera offers USB Streaming, so you can stream footage at 30 frames per second over the Web via a USB connection.

TRV18 is not a mega pixel camera and can take usual VGA quality 640 x 480 stills, which, of course, is quite low by the standards of dedicated digital cameras, but typical for most cams.

Some DV camcorders now offer megapixel CCDs that offer much higher resolutions. Sony megapixel camcorders can deliver still images at 1152 x 864 or 1200 x 900 pixels. So if you are going to replace your digital camera, DCR-TRV18 is not a choice.

The camcorder has a IEEE 1394 Firewire port for transferring your video to and from your camcorder to your computer or to any other digital device. It has both standard, RCA and S-Video in out ports.

The TRV18 also features a color optical viewfinder, a bright 2.5-inch flip-out LCD, and a hot-shoe for an external light.

Because of larger CCD, low light perfomance of TRV18 is slightly better than with more expensive TRV27. DCR-TRV18 also has a “Night Shot” mode for videotaping at zero Lux (darkness).

I would recommend to go with little more expensive TRV-25 or TRV-27, which provides better picture quality.

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