Most helpful critical review
I Love Sony, But...Disappointed.
on July 15, 2014
After reading rave reviews by Consumer Reports, I decided that this would be my first camcorder since the 8mm Sony that I bought back in 1999. Unfortunately, the build quality of Sony's new entry level camcorder is pretty glaring. When I took it out of the box, I was shocked by how lightweight and plasticky the unit felt. Everything, from the housing to the buttons to the lens frame, is made of perceptively cheap-to-the-touch plastic. I was afraid that if I were to accidentally drop it while attaching it to my tripod that it would shatter into dozens of pieces. There is no on/off button (it turns on when you slide open the lens cover - with a loud snap), there is no lamp (it was so-so in low lighting), there is no touchscreen LCD (a big minus in my book, as using the tiny joystick to chase around minuscule icons is very frustrating), and there are no manual controls separate from that infuriating menu. The image quality was the biggest disappointment - the HD movies and still captures from my Sony NEX and Sony P&S (can you tell I'm a Sony fan?) look and sound better! Needless to say, this went back a week later, and now I'm looking at Panasonic. Or I might save up for a higher tier Sony. But after my experience with this model, I'm twice as shy.