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Customer Review

212 of 216 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Entry Level Handycam, March 25, 2008
This review is from: Sony DCR-HC52 MiniDV Handycam Camcorder with 40x Optical Zoom (Discontinued by Manufacturer) (Electronics)
First let's correct the Amazon description, this is a 40X optical zoom camera, not 25X as seen on the product itself.

This is a great camera to start out with, the simplicity of Mini DV tapes makes this a good value choice. DVD camcorders in this price range suffer from bad battery life, and disk errors that can render your disks useless. The Mini DV tapes are tried and true.

I use an Apple computer at home and the camera connects to iMovie with no problems using the iLink port on the camera. All you need in most cases is a Firewire 6pin to 4pin cable, and you are good to go.

The video and audio quality are good, and the night vision is fun too. This is not a upper level camera so don't expect several bells and whistles, but it performs great, and has the basic features most people will ever need. The battery life is fair, but that is expected, all camcorder companies want you to buy an extra battery, but at least Sony gives you several options.

With a full charge and a new tape, expect about an hour of record time.
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Tracked by 3 customers

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Showing 1-8 of 8 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Nov 17, 2008, 10:01:42 PM PST
Paul Berry says:
Another reviewer claimed the firewire connection did not work . His computer did not recognize the camera.

Posted on Dec 22, 2008, 8:48:56 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Dec 22, 2008, 9:19:47 AM PST
G. Morrison says:
In specs, Amazon says that this is "mini DVD," not minDV. I don't think it has a mic input, either: Even though such inputs require a "powered" mic, having such inputs is considered a plus by most people still interested in miniDV....

Lower-end flash-mem videocams are a lot less hassle and much more convenient than these for most newbies--especially for those who desire neither to become advanced users nor to use pro-equipment in the future....

Posted on Apr 28, 2009, 6:26:44 AM PDT
Tracee says:
Good to know it works with a Mac....that was exactly what I wanted to know!

Posted on Sep 12, 2009, 7:20:23 PM PDT
I. Gross says:
So you think this is a good camcorder for those of us who don't want to be the next Ken Burns?

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 25, 2010, 9:23:20 AM PDT
B Wilson says:
There were several people who commented that they could not get the firewire connection to work. The Sony manual gives instructions for using the firewire connection with the DCR-HC54, but not the DCR-HC52. I was wanting to buy one of these cameras but I was concerned that the firewire connection might not work, so I contacted Sony and asked if I would be able to connect the DCR-HC52 to Windows 7 by firewire. The Sony support person said that the iLink (firewire) cable can be used with the DCR-HC52. When I asked why the manual did not indicate that, I could not get an answer. I then asked if Windows 7 had the hardware driver needed for the DCR-HC52. I was told that I had to install the iLink driver and to contact my computer's manufacturer for the driver. When I said my computer was custom built, the Sony rep then told me to contact Microsoft support for the camcorder driver. I asked why Sony could not make the hardware driver available since it was a Sony product. I was again told, "I'm sorry; it is required to contact the Microsoft support team to get the i.Link drivers when the operating system is windows (windows7, windows vista and xp)."

So based on several people saying that they had problems making the firewire connection with the DCR-HC52, I'm not taking the risk. I'm buying something else--especially since Sony support was not helpful at all.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 9, 2010, 8:54:47 AM PST
Krejaton says:
Just to clarify, I run the endzone video equipment for our HS football team and use the Sony Handicam DCR-HC52 with a Windows 7 Dell laptop. The firewire connection runs wonderfully and instead of using the tapes, I use Adobe On Location and record the game straight to my laptop via firewire.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 6, 2010, 10:27:43 PM PST
Seenu Subbu says:
Sony has supported Firewire from ages. I owned a Hi-8 TRV110 which had firewire interface and boy did that work fine. I had some challenges when I connected it to a custom built AMD Athlon system but a few drivers later, it worked just fine. Of course, never bothered to contact Sony.

Posted on May 7, 2014, 6:38:39 AM PDT
Deirdre says:
I have this same camera. The problem I am having is this camera had belong to my sister who reasonly pass way. I took the camera in hoping to connet it to my computer and taken the tapes that she had and copying them to DVDs. I have connected this camera to my computer (using the 6pin to 4pin cable) but the camera is not reconized. I am using window vista. Did this camera come with a CD that I have to download 1st? I don't know what else to do. I am all spent out. Help Please.
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