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on May 1, 2013
After researching on alot of different web sites and looking up endless reviews I finally decided on the CX220 model, if your looking for a amateur camcorder for around 250 dollars save yourself the time and get this camera, its a very nice compromise between basic function and a really modest price for what you get. The Sony CX220 has all the necessary features you want with no over priced frills. I paid 250 for the value bundle with 32 gb memory card, extra battery, wall charger, car charger, mini tripod, cleaning kit, and camecorder case this value is unbeatable. Higher end Sony CX models will add 16 gb of internal memory which is a nice feature but they will increase the price by 50 dollars or more when you can simply buy a sdhc class 10 or higher memory card for around 20 dollars and that will give you twice the memory.

-Recording Modes-
There are 4 different recording modes.
1. Highest def which is 1080 p (60 frames per second) approx 2hr 30min record time on a 32 gb memory card
2. High def which is 1080 i (30 frames per second) approx 3hr 30 min record time on a 32 gb memory card
3. Standard def 480 i (lower resolution 30 frames per second) approx 4 hr 30 min record time
4. Mp4 for quick internet or cell phone transfers

I usually use the 1080 i record mode this provides very good video even in low light conditions with the proper settings enabled. You can also take pictures as you record video on the second to highest rec mode which is fantastic for capturing those key sporting event pictures.

The 2 Lithium Ion batteries included in the bundle are the NP FV30 and the NP FV50.
the NPFV30 will give you approx. 95 minutes of record time (depending on settings)
the NPFV50 will give you approx. 180 minutes of record time (depending on settings)
and you have the option to recharge the batteries directly in the camcorder, on the provided wall charger, or by the provided car charger. Other battery options for separate purchase are the NPFV70 (375 minutes record time) or the NPFV100 (745 minutes record time)

-Output Connections-
-The built in USB connection lets you plug the CX220 directly into your computer to make easy data transfers so there is no real need for a seperate card reader.
-HDMI output lets you plug the provided HDMI cable from the CX220 directly to your tv for full 1080 P video display and picture slideshow display from the camcorder.

The CX220 has a built in speaker for playback sound dirtectly on the camcorder and for recording sound uses "Dolby Digital Stereo Creator". This camcorder records good sound quality in stereo and has a wind sound reduction feature if your recording at a windy location. It also has a built in zoom mic and adjustable mic level which gives you the option to mute or reduce background noise.

Carl Zeiss 29.8 wide angle lens. The 1080 settings are truly vibrant, especially when recording landscape and nature. It also comes equipt with a sony patented Cmos Exmor R sensor that lets in extra light for low light situations. It has a lux rating of 3 which basically means the minimum lighting requirement needed is the equivilant of 3 candles in a 100 square foot area, but the more light the better (in short turn on a light and you should be fine). As with all camcorders in this price range recording in low light is not optimal but for my purposes it works reasonably well.

-Still shot-
The still shots are 8.9 mega pixel, which is higher resolution then the iPhone 5.

It can zoom up to 32x however with the active steady shot enabled you can only zoom 27x which I find is more then I ever need to zoom. To give you an idea you can read a bus sign across a park from over 100 yards away.

-Computer Compatability-
-PC-Operating requirements are (windows xp, windows vista, windows 7 and windows 8) Sony provides an online photo and video editing service for PC called "play memories" and is compatible with "You Tube" and "Facebook".
-MAC-Requirements are os x (version 10.5 - 10.8) Mac users you will need to download the Imovie app.
-PS3-Requires a network account and a simple application download.

-Direct Editing-
You have 3 options to edit your footage or pictures directly from your camera.
1. Deleting: you can delete both photos or footage: multiple images at once or individual scenes directly from your camcorder.
2. Protect: you can protect movies or photos from getting deleted by accident.
3. Direct copy: You can copy images to an external media device, ie external hard drive.

A quick list of adjustable settings are: white balance, exposure time, focus options, lux adjustments for low lighting environment, self timer, tele macro, steady shot, back light, digital zoom, face recognition, smile shutter, grid dislay, time date on dislay settings, beep sounds, lcd brightness, language setting, and power save mode.
There is also an I-auto feature that automatically optimizes your video settings based on where your recording. I find this feature very usefull since I dont want to have to adjust the settings every time Im indoor or outdoor or if its overcast ect...

Sony also gives a limited 1 year warranty, meaning they will replace any part they deem defective for up to a year after the purchase date.

The sony 32 gb card I use Sony 32GB SDHC Class 10 UHS-1 R40 Memory Card (SF32UY/TQMN) you also have the option to get the 64 gb card as well which is what I will be ordering next time.

Another handy accessory to have for organizing your memory cards ECO-FUSED® Black Memory Card Carrying Case / ECO-FUSED® Microfiber Cleaning Cloth Included

This camcorder has a ton of nice features and is a very good light weight all purpose starter camera perfect for capturing family vacations or your kids sporting event. I have already recomended it to family members especially if you can get the value bundle deal.

If this review helped let me know, I enjoy the feedback.... and if you have questions, I have answers.
1212 comments|283 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on December 29, 2013
Let me start by saying that I am a dad, and not a camera wiz. I bought this camera for the sole purpose of making home movies. I love the simplicity of use; open the viewer and it's on, push a button, and it's recording. It has a built in manually operated lens cover, which I prefer. A motorized automatic one is just something else that can break. I haven't had it long enough to explore all of the functions and features, or make DVD movies from the clips, but the clips look and sound great on my PC. It does well in low light, but I did notice some degradation in the quality of the video when capturing in low light. It doesn't record as good as it looks on the view screen. Newer models have a touch screen instead of one that has buttons like this one. I prefer not having a touch screen as the screen is small, and so are the icons and controls on the screen. I don't use the controls often, and my screen is free of smudgy fingerprints.

More expensive models also have built in memory, which makes no sense to me at all from a convenience and cost standpoint. Why would I want to be required to plug the camera into my computer to retrieve video, when I can simply remove the SD card and do the same thing? For the difference in price for the models with the built in memory, I could buy three times the storage capacity in a more convenient removable format. As the price of removable storage goes down, and the capacity increases, it makes even more sense to go with removable storage devices.

When I got the camcorder, I wanted to see how it worked right away. I spent little time with the operator's manual, and simply went through the quick start guide to get the basics. I was recording video in no time. When I removed the SD card and inserted it into my laptop, I found that in addition to the video, there were also still pictures. I thought this was a little odd, and thought about turning this feature off until I viewed the stills. I got some very candid still pictures that I added to my photo files. Just be aware that this is the default setting for the camcorder.

I bought the bundle package primarily for the high capacity battery, the AC/DC charger, and the 32 GB SD card. I charged the high capacity battery, and haven't come close to depleting the charge. It also helps balance the weight, and gives you a place to steady the camera with your thumb while recording. The tripod is okay, and is mostly useful to use as a handle when you are trying to keep the camera still for extended periods of time. The bag that comes in the bundle is cheaply made, and extremely small. It would be full when everything in the bundle is put inside. I have a fairly new camera bag that also isn't very big, but I was able to get everything that came with this camcorder in it as well as a still camera, the charger for it, cables for both, with some room left over. What I was not able to get in the bag is the operating guide. This manual is printed on paper that is one grade above newspaper, and is seven inches tall by five inches wide. It doesn't come close to fitting in any compartment in my camera bag without folding it in half. Sony, if you are listening, please make a user's manual that is printed on decent paper, and sized so it's convenient for its intended use.
0Comment|38 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on August 18, 2013
have been using for awhile now. No problems,closeups exceptional.I have a little trouble finding small objects without reading glasses.The accessories were perfect,just what was needed.A big plus from this seller.Do not try to use the stick on screen savers,I went through 3 before giving up trying to get out the bubbles.I can't find a single problem with this handcam,except shaking when in closeups(normal difficulty with any zoom-this camcorder has a stabilizer that really helps.I think that I do miss the view finder because of my sight problem.Price was great-same as Walmart but then the accessories added by the seller made a huge difference.The extra battery,sd card,case,etc...what a great deal.Woould buy again from this seller.IOncluded just the right accessories.
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on August 5, 2013
It definitely lives up to the Sony name. Very high video quality and audio is amazing. Such great ease of use as well. Only issue I have is a hard time transferring video to my laptop as I have a Macbook and the software isn't Mac compatible. It takes much too long to transfer using iMovie (one of only 2 options out side of the software). Is there any other options I'm overlooking? You would think Sony would have a list of choices between Mac and PC. Other than that I highly recommend this item.
33 comments|24 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on July 22, 2013
I bought this as a Father's Day gift for my husband. He hasn't had a camcorder since digital cameras came into existence - and that's been a long time. Anyway, he as been looking at them and talking about getting one just as long. So, I took a chance and got this bundle for him. So far, so good. He's in love with it! Thank goodness!!! Based on what I see from him, this is a really nice camcorder - and one can't bet the price for all that one gets!
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on November 25, 2014
I've owned several Sony cameras. Ones that used VHS, Floppy disks, CDs or DigiSticks. Been awhile since I've used a Sony product though since cell phones now take decent on-the-go shots. I wanted to get something better than my phone and I figured I always loved Sony. This baby had tons of 4 and 5 star reviews. Those reviews couldn't be more wrong. Let me explain why. I figured I would try Sony again but It was between this or the Canon VIXIA HF R500 Black. I should have tried the Canon. I tried recording in 1080i, 1080p, 720p, custom exposure settings, custom focus settings, etc. But nothing helped make it better. My attached image is one I Googled. On the left is what noise looks like and what this camera shoots like. Disappointed in Sony. I'm tired of being scammed by these bigger companies. The camera feels cheaply built. It doesn't shoot well and we are led to believe that because it carries the Sony name, that it will shoot like a Sony should. I hadn't realized there was such a thing as a "bad" Sony camera until now. I'm not willing to spend $600+ just to shoot home videos. Back to using my phone. P.S. I purchase this for $129.99 and I'm still returning it.
review image
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on December 12, 2013
Video quality is bad indoors, and mediocre outdoors. There is a lot of noise and/or compression artifacts even on the best quality setting. If you shoot outdoors on a sunlit day, it looks almost as good as cell phone video. In addition, it is $100 more expensive here than if you would buy the same camera on newegg.
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on November 25, 2015
Camera arrived with everything promised.

However (you knew that was coming, right?)

I purchased this specifically to record 1280x720. To achieve that requires recording in dual-mode. No problem, I can always delete the higher quality video. I turns out you need:
* 64gig card minimum
* 94mbps record time. 94!
Most cards do 40, 60, or 90. 94 is about a fast as I've found.

Meaning, I purchased a lower-end camera to film at a lower rate & to do that I need a very-high-end memory card.

I did find one on, which was about $50. Maybe on Black Friday I can find a better deal.

Everything else about this camera is very nice. I really like the form factor, this purchase came with an extra battery, charger, (2) micro-HDMI to HDMI cables, inexpensive bag, mini-tripod, (2) batteries, etc.

Also, according to the manual it takes at 2+ hours to charge the battery (in the charger). 270 minutes if via the USB cable in the camera (I find this very hard to believe). Generally it's been 2 minutes of charge time via USB give me 1 minute of record/play time. We'll see. I'll update once I use it.

Still a great buy, even though Sony doesn't make it clear that if you really want all the features advertised you're going to pay. Why not just allow the lower recording option without all the fuss? I think Sony is pushing an adjenda that doesn't make sense.
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on January 27, 2015
Returned item because-
1. The spare battery that came jn the bundle does not work with the camera.
2. The SD card came in the bundle was standard size.... This camera needs a micro sd
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on March 22, 2016
I love it and used it to film dozens of soccer games since I purchased it. Buy a regular size tripod or, even better, monopod with it. Their mini-tripod is a joke. The extra batteries help. Basically, the batteries last about one hour of filming a soccer game without stopping. Having a back-up batter and being able to switch at halftime is always a relief.

The thing weighs next to nothing, but it works great. It has great sound and video and is worth the low investment cost.
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