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Sony HVR-S270U 1080i HDV Camcorder

B&H # SOHVRS270U Mfr # HVR-S270U
No Longer Available
Product Highlights
  • 1/3" Exmor 3CMOS Sensors
  • Zeiss 12x Interchangeable Zoom
  • 1080i, 24p
  • HD-SDI
  • Records to MiniDV & CompactFlash
  • Solid State Memory Recording Unit

The Sony HVR-S270U is an HDV camcorder designed for ENG applications, while still being highly cost-effective. Incorporating all the benefits of HDV technology, the camera can also take advantage of standard-size DV tapes for increased run-times.

Additionally, the HVR-S270U can record directly to CompactFlash cards via the camera's supplied memory recording unit. Combined with Sony's entire family of HDV products, the HVR-S270U is a great camcorder for almost any production, including documentaries, news, low-budget movies, music videos, and industrials.

ClearVID 3CMOS Technology
Sony's ClearVID sensors are positioned at a 45° angle. Since each pixel is positioned at this angle the result is far clearer diagonal lines. Images will appear crisper, without the apparent "jaggies" that often plague video signals.
Record to CompactFlash
The camera comes with an attachable recording unit, allowing users to record HDV and DV to CompactFlash cards. With cards getting larger and larger in capacity, the ability to take advantage of tapeless workflow while still using cheap media is a welcome addition.
High Definition on MiniDV Tapes with HDV
The HDV format, used in the HVR-S270U, allows high definition recording on standard MiniDV tapes. This is accomplished by using the very popular MPEG-2 compression technique used in many applications, including DVDs and satellite television.
24p Capability
In 24p mode, images from the CMOS can be 2:3 pulldown-converted and recorded onto tape in the standard 60i HDV format. The tape can then be played back or edited using an ordinary HDV system. True 24p editing can be achieved by uploading 2:3 pulldown-converted images via an i.LINK FireWire interface to a compatible non-linear editing system. The resultant images resemble the visual motion of film!
High Definition LCD
When shooting HD footage, standard LCD screens can be very deceiving; what looked perfect amidst a full-day video shoot can sometimes prove very soft or out of focus while in post-production. The HVR-S270U comes equipped with 1-MegaPixel LCD screen, eliminating this oft-pesky phenomenon. Record with confidence, knowing that what you see is what you will get. The LCD is well-placed on the top of the viewfinder for simple operation.

Go To

Signal System HDV: 1080/60i
DVCAM/DV: 480/60i (NTSC)
Image Device 1/3" 3CMOS Exmor Sensor system
Lens Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T* Zoom Lens, 12x (Optical)
f = 4.4-52.8mm
f = 32-384mm at 16:9 mode
f = 39.5-47.4mm (4:3 mode)
filter diameter: 72mm
Signal-to-Noise Ratio Not Specified by Manufacturer
Horizontal Resolution 800 TV Lines
Sensitivity 2000 lx, 89.9% reflectance: Close to F8 @60i
Minimum Illumination 1.5 lux (Auto Gain, Auto Iris, 1/30 Shutter)
Vertical Smear None (CMOS sensor)
Built-in Filters Clear, 1/4, 1/16, 1/64
LCD Monitor 3.2", 16:9 Aspect Ratio, 1 MegaPixel Xtrafine LCD
Viewfinder 0.45", 16:9 Aspect Ratio, 852 x 480 Resolution
Scan Matching Yes
Memory Card Slot MemoryStick Duo Media
Shutter Speed Range Auto: 1/60-1/2000

Manual
60i/30p: 1/4-1/10000
24p: 1/3 - 1/10000
Gain Selection 0, 3, 6, 9, 12, 15, 18 dB
VTR
Tape Format DVCAM Small Cassette
HDV Record and Play
DVCAM Record and Play
DV Record and Play
Tape Speed HDV: 18.8 mm/s
DVCAM: 28.2 mm/s
DV SP Mode: 18.8 mm/s
Card Slot CompactFlash
Signal-to-Noise Ratio Not Specified by Manufacturer
Maximum Recording Time HDV: 276 min (with PHDV-276DM Cassette)
DVCAM: 184 min (with PHDV-276DM Cassette)
DV: 276 min (with PHDV-276DM Cassette)
CompactFlash recording time in HDV/DV: 36 min (using 8 GB CF card); 72 min (using 16 GB CF card)
Audio
Audio Dynamic Range Not Specified by Manufacturer
Audio Signal Format HDV
MPEG1 Audio Layer II
DVCAM/DV
16-bit/48kHz 2 Channel Mode
12-bit/32kHz 4 Channel Mode
Audio Frequency Response 20Hz to 20kHz
Signal to Noise Ratio Not Specified by Manufacturer
General
Input and Output Connectors Composite Video: BNC (x1 Output)
Component Video: BNCx3 (x1 Output)
HD/SD-SDI: BNC (x1 Output)
Unbalanced Audio (x1 Output)
FireWire/i.LINK: 6-Pin (x1 Input, x1 Output)
LANC: Stereo 2.5mm jack
XLR Audio: XLR 3-Pin Female, 4-Channel
Headphone: Stereo Mini-Jack
Power Requirements Battery Pack: 12 VDC
AC Adapter: 14.4 VDC
Power Consumption HDV: 12.5W
DVCAM/DV: 11.9W
Operating Temperature 32-104°F (0-40°C)
Dimensions (WxHxD) Not Specified By Manufacturer
Weight 13.9 lb (6.3 kg)
Sony HVR-S270U 1080i HDV Camcorder
  • 12x Zoom Lens
  • Lens Hood
  • CR2025 Lithium Battery
  • Eye-Cup
  • Shoe Kit
  • ECM-XM1 Monaural Electolet Condenser Microphone
  • Shoulder Belt
  • CD-ROM Operating Instructions
  • Printed Operating Instructions
  • HVR-MRC1 Memory Recording Unit Kit
  • 1-Year Warranty
  • REVIEW SNAPSHOT®

    by PowerReviews
    SonyHVR-S270U 1080i HDV Camcorder
     
    3.9

    (based on 19 reviews)

    Ratings Distribution

    • 5 Stars

       

      (7)

    • 4 Stars

       

      (6)

    • 3 Stars

       

      (3)

    • 2 Stars

       

      (3)

    • 1 Stars

       

      (0)

    79%

    of respondents would recommend this to a friend.

    Pros

    • Great picture quality (14)
    • Great features (11)
    • Great sound (11)
    • Comfortable to operate (7)
    • Versatile (7)

    Cons

    • Inadequate features (3)
    • Low-quality recordings (3)

    Best Uses

    • Weddings (11)
    • Documentaries (10)
    • Movies/short films (8)
    • HD shooting (7)
    • Travel (7)
      • Reviewer Profile:
      • Pro videographer (11), Professional (6)
      • Was this a gift?:
      • No (6)

    Most Liked Positive Review

     

    Great camera and very versatile!

    The camera is incredible and extremely versatile! I can use the same type of tape stock that I've used for years in my DSR 250 for both the DVCAM mode and also in HDV...Read complete review

    The camera is incredible and extremely versatile! I can use the same type of tape stock that I've used for years in my DSR 250 for both the DVCAM mode and also in HDV mode. The picture is beautiful in both modes and the compact flash recorder is a bonus. The camera is heavier than the DSR 250 but much more balanced. I find it easier to shoot and stabilize on my shoulder than the 250. When shooting in HDV mode the view finder (color) can be a bit hard to focus with a lot of motion. I've used this camera for weddings, corporate projects and for live event shows for IMAG purpose. It has been great. The only neg on the live event was in order to use the video out I had to turn the LCD off in order for the video out to work. I've also found the the One Push Auto focus not to be to reliable. Full auto is better than the one push. The sound from the new mic is much better. The smooth gain up is really nice for times in a shoot where you need to keep filming but need to bump up the gain without the harsh change. To think in one camera you can shoot great DVCAM but change a couple settings and now you can record incredible HD footage. Keep in mind though that it will do 1080 24 or 30p but it is only 1440 x1080. It's still an amazing picture. I bought 2 of them and have been very happy so far.

    Issues that bothered me most:
    - Nothing came with but the lens and a mono mic. Using this for weddings and special events would be nice to record HD with Stereo sound. That's just me though...
    - The compact flash recorder is great and the docking station that was supplied would be great if they would have supplied a way to power up the unit. It is useless until you get power for it and you can't access the images from the camera because the recorder covers the firewire port.
    - Lens is now detachable (That good) but the view finder isn't any more. It is now hard wired on. Problem if the view finder goes out and can't just replace it and not helpful if you need to break the camera down for packing in a smaller case.
    - The video out only working with the LCD off.

    VS

    Most Liked Negative Review

     

    Not A Total Waste...Other's Are Better

    We demo'd the Sony HVR-S270U, the Panasonic HPX-300, and the JVC GY-HM700. While this Sony camera does offer some good features, like the flash drive, and record to tape for those...Read complete review

    We demo'd the Sony HVR-S270U, the Panasonic HPX-300, and the JVC GY-HM700. While this Sony camera does offer some good features, like the flash drive, and record to tape for those who don't have a good file backup system, this camera also has some major flaws.

    1. Lens: Feels like a cheap lens. The aperture ring just doesn't feel right (flimsy), the zoom control is super slow, and worst of all, the focus ring seems to adjust in jerky increments. It feels like your grinding the lens, and focus is not precise. If you're going to have a detachable lens on a camera like this, why not go with industry standard lenses? I am told however that you can replace the supplied Zeiss lens with a 1/3 inch HD bayonet lens of your choice, but then you're paying a lot more for that combo than the camera is worth, IMO.

    2. Viewfinder: How, oh how, can you have an HD camera without an HD viewfinder? I found it irritating to get focus on this thing, because truly, you strain your eyes trying to find focus, and end up assuming you're close enough before you're out of time and the shot's gone! You have a camera shooting 1080i, and a viewfinder showing 852 x 480 Resolution. A slightly higher price for an HD viewfinder would be worth it! Also, I find the increasing trend of non-detachable viewfinders extremely annoying.

    3. LCD: I've never been a fan of the LCD on top of the viewfinder, but other's really like it. This isn't a big deal really, but a personal thing for me. Plus, when you have the LCD on, you cannot output through composite. This is just one of those super annoying things that could have been easily fixed for a few dollars more.

    4. The recording format is confusing, and I'm not sure I fully understand it. If I'm not mistaken, the camera only shoots in 60i, and it does pull down to get progressive video. Other cameras do this as well, but I found the "24P" video that we shot with this camera to be on the ugly side, with more motion blur than should be there.

    Overall, I think if they improved these few things, they'd have a good camera, worthy of maybe 3 1/2 to 4 stars. But, for now, for the money, you're better off with the Panasonic HPX-300. Yes, P2 cards are expensive, but the camera you get is nearly the same price, and it blows the Sony away as far as performance and capabilities. The JVC GY-HM700 is meh, but would still be the second choice in this price range, and the Sony third. I'm talking about sub 10K cameras here.

    These are my opinions only, but I'm confident in what I've said. I do give Sony props for 4 channels of audio, though my understanding is, when recording to tape, you can only get two channels of 16bit 48Khz audio, or 4 channels of 12bit 32Khz. That's the structure of miniDV tape. I believe that when you use the flash drive option, you can get the 4 channels of 16bit 48Khz audio though, HDV only.

    Also, the HDMI output is nice to have, though it will no doubt be underutilized by most users, and the image quality of the camera overall is quite nice.

    Finally, another good function of the camera is it's ability to shoot DVCAM as well, as some clients are still looking for that. Also, being able to slap a gold mount or v-mount pro battery on here is a solid option.

    Reviewed by 19 customers

    Sort by

    Displaying reviews 1-19

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    (2 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    I like it

    By Talison Kalith, Reflection, Media

    from Houston, Texas

    About Me Pro Videographer

    Verified Reviewer

    Pros

    • Easy to Use
    • Good in Low Light
    • Great Picture Quality
    • Great Sound
    • Great Zoom
    • Large Clear LCD

    Cons

    • Limited Zoom

    Best Uses

    • Documentaries
    • HD Shooting
    • Indoors/Low Light
    • Movies/Short Films
    • Weddings/Events

    Comments about Sony HVR-S270U 1080i HDV Camcorder:

    I am using it from 2 years and i never had any problem with this camera, mainly i am using it for TV Programs, weddings, stage shows and HD shooting

    • Was this a gift?:
    • No

    Share this review

    (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

     
    5.0

    GREAT CAMERA

    By Dave

    from Vermont

    About Me Pro Videographer

    Pros

    • Easy to Use
    • Good in Low Light
    • Great Picture Quality
    • Great Sound
    • Great Zoom
    • Large Clear LCD

    Cons

      Best Uses

      • Documentaries
      • HD Shooting
      • Movies/Short Films
      • Travel
      • Weddings/Events

      Comments about Sony HVR-S270U 1080i HDV Camcorder:

      Lots of PRO options and great picture quality!

      • Was this a gift?:
      • No

      Share this review

      (1 of 3 customers found this review helpful)

       
      5.0

      great

      By user666468952002

      from Fort Wayne, IN

      About Me Semi-pro Videographer

      Verified Buyer

      Pros

      • Easy to Use
      • Great Picture Quality
      • Great Sound
      • Great Zoom
      • Large Clear LCD
      • Zoom range/performance

      Cons

        Best Uses

        • Weddings/Events

        Comments about Sony HVR-S270U 1080i HDV Camcorder:

        product is working very nicely. looks like I'll be getting some paid work, great investment

        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

        Share this review

        (4 of 4 customers found this review helpful)

         
        4.0

        Good upgrade from DVCAM

        By Vidspec

        from Slidell LA

        About Me Pro Videographer

        Verified Reviewer

        Pros

        • 43 169SD and HD modes
        • CF Capture Unit included
        • Good in Low Light
        • Large Clear LCD
        • Shoulder mounted
        • Tape and Card capability

        Cons

        • S-Video OutLCD switch
        • Viewfinder Not the Best

        Best Uses

        • Documentaries
        • HD Shooting
        • Indoors/Low Light
        • Weddings/Events

        Comments about Sony HVR-S270U 1080i HDV Camcorder:

        I purchased two of these cameras along with a Sony Z7U to upgrade from my DSR-250 DVCAM cameras. My main purpose was to begin shooting in 16:9SD with future HD use.

        These cameras will do all shooting modes in both tape and/or CF card. You get to work in the past and present while working towards the card only future. You have the flexibility to provide footage in all modes and media choices.

        The cameras can give you HD quality while still matching perfectly with older DVCAMs when shot in the 4:3SD mode. This allows you to use them with an older 4:3 DVCAM while slowly acquiring more HD gear.

        The LCD is incredible. It is accurate and very sharp. The viewfinder is a bit small and needs to be fine tuned to really be sure you are in focus. It is fixed so you can't swing it out for more flexible viewing. The camera does not have an HDMI which is disappointing. It has an s-video out which is great. The problem is that you can't use the s-video out and LCD at the same time. This makes the s-video out nearly worthless.

        The auto focus is not as good as my 250s. The focus ring is okay but there is a rather dumb way you have to push it forward to move from manual to auto focus. I wish they would have just put a switch on the camera to change this setting.

        The camera has way more positives than negatives. It is well built for its class. It has top controls for zoom and record. It has four XLR inputs and good sound recording. The LCD is positioned on the viewfinder which is much better than the side. It can take the mini or standard size tape. You can record 4 1/2 hours of HDV on a single tape which is very helpful for long events like dance recitals. The CF card capture is easy to use and snaps on the side of the camera. You can run tape and cards at the same time or just one of them. You have the downward compatibility with most accessories used by the older DVCAMS such as the tripod plate and batteries.

        This is not a perfect camera but the best I could find for my purposes. I was not ready for card only cameras but wanted to slowly learn the new technology. I'm able to use cheap tape or convenient cards depending on the job I am doing.

        Overall, if you are looking to upgrade from DVCAM to HD/16:9 SD but still need to have the tape option, this is the best choice in this class of cameras. It is a great stepping stone between the old world of tape/DVCAM and the new world of cards.

        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

        Share this review

        (2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)

         
        5.0

        Economical

        By David

        from Taiwan

        About Me Pro Videographer

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Great Picture Quality
        • Very artistic

        Cons

        • Viewfinder In Low Quality

        Best Uses

        • Documentaries
        • HD Shooting
        • Movies/Short Films
        • Weddings/Events

        Comments about Sony HVR-S270U 1080i HDV Camcorder:

        The picture quality nearly like sony dsr-400

        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

        Share this review

        (0 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

         
        3.0

        Size Matter

        By dragon

        from MN

        About Me Casual User

        Verified Buyer

        Pros

        • Good Image Stabilization
        • Good in Low Light
        • Great Picture Quality
        • Great Sound
        • Large Clear LCD

        Cons

        • Complicated To Operate
        • Limited Zoom

        Best Uses

        • Documentaries
        • HD Shooting
        • Home Movies
        • Movies/Short Films
        • Travel
        • Weddings/Events

        Comments about Sony HVR-S270U 1080i HDV Camcorder:

        The HDV is definitely best compare to my old one. I haven't used it much but one of my friend told me that this camcorder is one of the best compared to the consumer products.

        • Was this a gift?:
        • No

        Share this review

        (12 of 17 customers found this review helpful)

         
        2.0

        Not A Total Waste...Other's Are Better

        By Larry

        from Garland, TX

        About Me Pro Videographer

        Pros

        • Great Picture Quality
        • Great Sound

        Cons

        • Flimsy Construction
        • Inadequate Features

        Best Uses

          Comments about Sony HVR-S270U 1080i HDV Camcorder:

          We demo'd the Sony HVR-S270U, the Panasonic HPX-300, and the JVC GY-HM700. While this Sony camera does offer some good features, like the flash drive, and record to tape for those who don't have a good file backup system, this camera also has some major flaws.

          1. Lens: Feels like a cheap lens. The aperture ring just doesn't feel right (flimsy), the zoom control is super slow, and worst of all, the focus ring seems to adjust in jerky increments. It feels like your grinding the lens, and focus is not precise. If you're going to have a detachable lens on a camera like this, why not go with industry standard lenses? I am told however that you can replace the supplied Zeiss lens with a 1/3 inch HD bayonet lens of your choice, but then you're paying a lot more for that combo than the camera is worth, IMO.

          2. Viewfinder: How, oh how, can you have an HD camera without an HD viewfinder? I found it irritating to get focus on this thing, because truly, you strain your eyes trying to find focus, and end up assuming you're close enough before you're out of time and the shot's gone! You have a camera shooting 1080i, and a viewfinder showing 852 x 480 Resolution. A slightly higher price for an HD viewfinder would be worth it! Also, I find the increasing trend of non-detachable viewfinders extremely annoying.

          3. LCD: I've never been a fan of the LCD on top of the viewfinder, but other's really like it. This isn't a big deal really, but a personal thing for me. Plus, when you have the LCD on, you cannot output through composite. This is just one of those super annoying things that could have been easily fixed for a few dollars more.

          4. The recording format is confusing, and I'm not sure I fully understand it. If I'm not mistaken, the camera only shoots in 60i, and it does pull down to get progressive video. Other cameras do this as well, but I found the "24P" video that we shot with this camera to be on the ugly side, with more motion blur than should be there.

          Overall, I think if they improved these few things, they'd have a good camera, worthy of maybe 3 1/2 to 4 stars. But, for now, for the money, you're better off with the Panasonic HPX-300. Yes, P2 cards are expensive, but the camera you get is nearly the same price, and it blows the Sony away as far as performance and capabilities. The JVC GY-HM700 is meh, but would still be the second choice in this price range, and the Sony third. I'm talking about sub 10K cameras here.

          These are my opinions only, but I'm confident in what I've said. I do give Sony props for 4 channels of audio, though my understanding is, when recording to tape, you can only get two channels of 16bit 48Khz audio, or 4 channels of 12bit 32Khz. That's the structure of miniDV tape. I believe that when you use the flash drive option, you can get the 4 channels of 16bit 48Khz audio though, HDV only.

          Also, the HDMI output is nice to have, though it will no doubt be underutilized by most users, and the image quality of the camera overall is quite nice.

          Finally, another good function of the camera is it's ability to shoot DVCAM as well, as some clients are still looking for that. Also, being able to slap a gold mount or v-mount pro battery on here is a solid option.

          Share this review

          (7 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

           
          5.0

          I bought the cam over a year ago.

          By Boy Genius 68 Productions

          from NYC/NJ

          About Me Pro Videographer

          Verified Reviewer

          Pros

          • Comfortable to Operate
          • Durable
          • Great Features
          • Great Picture Quality
          • Great Sound
          • Simple Controls
          • Versatile

          Cons

            Best Uses

            • Documentaries
            • HD Shooting
            • Home Movies
            • Movies/Short Films
            • Travel

            Comments about Sony HVR-S270U 1080i HDV Camcorder:

            I use it for video and TV production. The cam has served me well, if you know what you are doing you will get the most out of it. [...]

            Share this review

            (5 of 6 customers found this review helpful)

             
            4.0

            MRC1 COMPACT FLASH CARDS AND HVR DR60

            By ELIAHU SASPRTAS

            from ISRAEL

            About Me Pro Videographer

            Pros

            • Comfortable to Operate
            • Durable
            • Great Features
            • Great Picture Quality
            • Great Sound
            • Simple Controls
            • Versatile

            Cons

              Best Uses

                Comments about Sony HVR-S270U 1080i HDV Camcorder:

                To download m2t clips from these devices on final cut pro it's awful! half of them don't show on log and transfer yet all of them will be seen on Premiere!So for all final cut pro users and owners of HVR S270 Z7 Z5and using the MRC1 or HVR DR60 for all of you your suffering is over!!!go to [@].com download a trial version of this software once installed start to rewrap your m2t clips from your MRC1 or DR 60 in a very short time you will get back your clips as mov file with no encoding at all!if you happy get a license for only [$] I did!!!!

                Share this review

                (9 of 9 customers found this review helpful)

                 
                4.0

                Funny

                By Eric Marin

                from Paris, France

                About Me Pro Videographer

                Verified Reviewer

                Pros

                • Great Features
                • Great Picture Quality

                Cons

                  Best Uses

                  • Documentaries

                  Comments about Sony HVR-S270U 1080i HDV Camcorder:

                  Funny how people compare old SD camcorders costing at least 10x more ans these one. You're right, S270 is not as well build than the older one. But what could you have elswhere for 10K$. The "Z" serie from Sony is one of the best in the market (especially Z7). this one is the same on a shoulder mount. You're right, don't expect HDCam SR and 4:4:4 format... It's just an excellent transition between SD and HD.
                  PS; forgive my english, I'm a french user.

                  Share this review

                  (5 of 5 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  4.0

                  Workhorse

                  By Larry

                  from Nashville, TN

                  About Me Pro Videographer

                  Verified Reviewer

                  Pros

                  • Comfortable to Operate
                  • Digital Zoom
                  • Dual Recording
                  • Durable
                  • Forward Mounted LCD
                  • Great Digital Zoom
                  • Great Features
                  • Great Picture Quality
                  • Great Sound
                  • Long Tape Recording
                  • Simple Controls
                  • Versatile

                  Cons

                  • Inadequate Features

                  Best Uses

                  • Commercials
                  • Corporate
                  • Documentaries
                  • Live Event Shooting
                  • Weddings

                  Comments about Sony HVR-S270U 1080i HDV Camcorder:

                  Great for taping 2-3 hour live events.
                  Shoulder mounted camera is comfortable and steady.
                  Camera is solidly built.
                  Flip-up forward mounted LCD Monitor is great for low level hand-held shots.
                  Auto focus is fast and can also be manually tweaked in the auto mode. A good feature.

                  Another great feature is the digital zoom button on the lens. This greatly increases the zoom ratio of the lens without any or very little video degradation.

                  Worst thing about the camera is the inability to send composite video out of the BNC jack while using the LCD Monitor. A switch on the viewfinder switches on one or the other. To see video on the LCD Monitor and send a video feed out the camera at the same time I have to run a firewire cable from the I-Line Jack to a Firewire to Composite Video Converter Box. The Compact Flash Recorder has to be removed from the camera to accomplish this. A poor design by Sony on an otherwise great camera.

                  Four channel audio is nice to have but troublesome to transfer to Final Cut Pro. Two playback passes must be done to capture the 4-channels from the camera. A time consuming process on a long production. Only the camera or Sony's more expensive HDV Record Deck will accomplish this. The lower priced HVR-15U will not.

                  Owned camera since the summer of 2008.

                  Share this review

                  (9 of 9 customers found this review helpful)

                   
                  4.0

                  S270U Good Bridge from DVCAM to HDV

                  By James

                  from Texas

                  About Me Pro Videographer

                  Pros

                  • Great Features
                  • Versatile

                  Cons

                    Best Uses

                    • Documentaries
                    • HD Shooting

                    Comments about Sony HVR-S270U 1080i HDV Camcorder:

                    Purchased two S270U cameras to replace oldie but goodie DVCAM model 300's. These cameras are not bad replacements to move into HD but don't expect HDCAM output from them (although cameras do have HD-SDI output). Almost too many options on these cameras. Flash card recorder is good for those who don't need extremely long record times. Might opt for ENG lens over the one it comes with if I had to do over. The good: "professional" shoulder mount look, backward compatible to DVCAM, HDV tape has long record times. Built in flash card recorder is a good option. If you can't go to full size XDCAM due to budget this is the one to get. Bad points: menu driven, standard optics could be better.

                    Share this review

                    (8 of 8 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    3.0

                    fine solution workhorse for small budget

                    By jon

                    from Alaska

                    About Me Pro Videographer

                    Verified Reviewer

                    Pros

                    • Comfortable to Operate
                    • Great Features
                    • Great Picture Quality
                    • Simple Controls
                    • Works fine in cold weathe

                    Cons

                    • Menu driven audio
                    • Timecode control by menu

                    Best Uses

                    • Documentaries
                    • Long recording format
                    • Travel

                    Comments about Sony HVR-S270U 1080i HDV Camcorder:

                    Can shoot both tape and Solid State at same time saves time in editing and allows tape back-up.
                    Buyers should not expect $30K-90K camera quality picture.
                    But this cameras picture beats my $80K camera from 10 years ago!
                    It shoots great low light and has variety of formats for the person that needs long format recording.

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                    (11 of 16 customers found this review helpful)

                     
                    2.0

                    Not impressed

                    By Joe Cook

                    from Detroit, MI

                    About Me Professional

                    Verified Reviewer

                    Pros

                      Cons

                      • Flimsy Construction
                      • Inadequate Features
                      • Low-Quality Recordings
                      • Uncomfortable

                      Best Uses

                        Comments about Sony HVR-S270U 1080i HDV Camcorder:

                        I've owned Sony cameras since the days of the DXC-1600 and I feel the cameras have gone down in quality as time goes along. This camera seems very cheaply built, poor operators manual and disappointing features. Why can't I get video or y/c out when I use the LCD viewfinder, I can do that with my Z-1s. I think Sony needs to drop back, review the design of this camera and send a new one to whoever bought the original.

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                        (8 of 12 customers found this review helpful)

                         
                        3.0

                        Howz the SONY S270 & SONY EX3 or EX1

                        By Binoy Samuel

                        from Presently India

                        About Me Professional

                        Verified Reviewer

                        Pros

                        • Great Features

                        Cons

                        • Low-Quality Recordings

                        Best Uses

                        • Special Events
                        • Travel
                        • Weddings

                        Comments about Sony HVR-S270U 1080i HDV Camcorder:

                        Love the wide range of formats although not a great fan of HDV format.... Great camera for Small Documentaries, Events But yes lacks image quality. Good price. Maybe compensate the Image quality with some better lenses.

                        I kinda like the image quality of the EX1

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                        (11 of 12 customers found this review helpful)

                         
                        5.0

                        Great Camera for Many Uses!

                        By Creative Jedi

                        from Phoenix, AZ

                        About Me Professional

                        Verified Buyer

                        Pros

                        • CF cards improve workflow
                        • Comfortable to Operate
                        • Great Features
                        • Great Picture Quality
                        • Great Sound
                        • Long recording time
                        • Versatile

                        Cons

                        • Ships without batteries
                        • Ships without tripod plat

                        Best Uses

                        • Commercial Production
                        • Corporate
                        • Movies/Short Films
                        • Music Videos
                        • Satellite TV Production
                        • Special Events
                        • Weddings

                        Comments about Sony HVR-S270U 1080i HDV Camcorder:

                        I shoot a wide variety of things from live events to TV commercials and TV show segments to corporate video for web and DVD. This camera goes from one job to another with the same great performance and ease of use. The flexibility of being able to shoot to CF cards, miniDV tape or full sized DV tape (for 4 1/2 hours of recording time) is an incredible advantage. Image quality and color are stunning with the new CMOS technology. Viewfinder and LCD screen are the best and brightest I've seen on any camera of this kind. It is very well balanced and the controls are well laid out. Be advised that it ships without battery, charger, and tripod plate (the only complaint that I have), although the market to which this is truly targeted probably already has those items from previous cameras. I love it and am so happy with my decision.

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                        (14 of 22 customers found this review helpful)

                         
                        2.0

                        Camera falls short on image quality

                        By Gene

                        from Ohio

                        About Me Professional

                        Verified Buyer

                        Pros

                        • Great Features

                        Cons

                        • Low-Quality Recordings
                        • Uncomfortable

                        Best Uses

                          Comments about Sony HVR-S270U 1080i HDV Camcorder:

                          We had high expectations when we purchased the HVR-S270U camera due to its specs and tape/CF card recording.

                          Unfortunately the image quality was totally unsatisfactory.

                          Out of the box the camera looks terrible. Crushed blacks and lifeless color. When we used the camera's menu-driven setting controls we were able to marginally improve the image, especially the black levels. However we had to push the the changes to the extremes and even then the image was certainly nothing we would ever be comfortable using or offering our customers.

                          Fortunately B&H has an outstanding return policy and we were able to return the camera system for a full refund.

                          If Sony can re-address the image quality of this camera it may be a great buy in an industry transitioning from take to non-linear recording, but for now it misses the mark.

                          • How long have you owned it:
                          • A month or less
                          • Similar:
                          • Sony XDCAM, Sony Betacam SP

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                          (14 of 14 customers found this review helpful)

                           
                          4.0

                          Great camera and very versatile!

                          By Mike

                          from Fuquay Varina, NC

                          About Me Professional

                          Verified Reviewer

                          Pros

                          • Comfortable to Operate
                          • Durable
                          • Great Features
                          • Great Picture Quality
                          • Great Sound
                          • Simple Controls
                          • Versatile

                          Cons

                          • Few Listed Below

                          Best Uses

                          • Corporate projects
                          • Family
                          • Movies/Short Films
                          • Special Events
                          • Sports
                          • Travel
                          • Weddings

                          Comments about Sony HVR-S270U 1080i HDV Camcorder:

                          The camera is incredible and extremely versatile! I can use the same type of tape stock that I've used for years in my DSR 250 for both the DVCAM mode and also in HDV mode. The picture is beautiful in both modes and the compact flash recorder is a bonus. The camera is heavier than the DSR 250 but much more balanced. I find it easier to shoot and stabilize on my shoulder than the 250. When shooting in HDV mode the view finder (color) can be a bit hard to focus with a lot of motion. I've used this camera for weddings, corporate projects and for live event shows for IMAG purpose. It has been great. The only neg on the live event was in order to use the video out I had to turn the LCD off in order for the video out to work. I've also found the the One Push Auto focus not to be to reliable. Full auto is better than the one push. The sound from the new mic is much better. The smooth gain up is really nice for times in a shoot where you need to keep filming but need to bump up the gain without the harsh change. To think in one camera you can shoot great DVCAM but change a couple settings and now you can record incredible HD footage. Keep in mind though that it will do 1080 24 or 30p but it is only 1440 x1080. It's still an amazing picture. I bought 2 of them and have been very happy so far.

                          Issues that bothered me most:
                          - Nothing came with but the lens and a mono mic. Using this for weddings and special events would be nice to record HD with Stereo sound. That's just me though...
                          - The compact flash recorder is great and the docking station that was supplied would be great if they would have supplied a way to power up the unit. It is useless until you get power for it and you can't access the images from the camera because the recorder covers the firewire port.
                          - Lens is now detachable (That good) but the view finder isn't any more. It is now hard wired on. Problem if the view finder goes out and can't just replace it and not helpful if you need to break the camera down for packing in a smaller case.
                          - The video out only working with the LCD off.

                          • How long have you owned it:
                          • A month or less

                          Share this review

                          (11 of 11 customers found this review helpful)

                           
                          5.0

                          I just bought the camera. Wow!

                          By Boy Genius 68

                          from NYC/NJ

                          About Me Professional

                          Pros

                          • Comfortable to Operate
                          • Durable
                          • Great Features
                          • Great Picture Quality
                          • Great Sound
                          • Simple Controls
                          • Versatile

                          Cons

                          • Cant find any yet

                          Best Uses

                          • Family
                          • Movies/Short Films
                          • Special Events
                          • Sports
                          • Travel
                          • Weddings

                          Comments about Sony HVR-S270U 1080i HDV Camcorder:

                          I have been around the block and for the money, this camera kicks Butt! Great features, Great function, and the CMOS technology is so clean. Im happy! No i dont work for Sony, I am a guy with a small start up production company and I am happy that I live in this time, you can do so much for so much less with the new technology.

                          • How long have you owned it:
                          • One-to-three months

                          Share this review

                          Required item: Recording media is not included. A memory card is required to record your footage.

                          Sony -  HDM63VG VG HDV Cassette (Videographer Grade )
                          • You Pay: $5.45
                           

                          Batteries & Power Adapters

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                          Required item: Batteries and AC/DC power are not included, and are required to power your camcorder.

                          Sony -  BP-GL65 Li-Ion V-Mount Battery
                          • You Pay: $329.95
                           

                          Capture your desired angle of view with a quality conversion lens.

                          Raynox -  HDP-9000EX 1.8x High Definition Telephoto Conversion Lens
                          • You Pay: $899.95
                           

                          Microphones & Audio Adapters

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                          Focus your sound with a high-quality microphone. Audio quality can make or break your video.

                          Rode -  NTG-2 Kit with Shock Mount and XLR Cable
                          • You Pay: $256.50
                           

                          Bags, Cases, & Straps

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                          Carry, organize and protect your investment with quick access to your gear.

                          Pearstone -  Pro Camcorder Case with Wheels
                          • You Pay: $139.95
                           

                          Rod Supports & Rig Systems

                          Revo -  SR-1500 Dual Grip Shoulder Support Rig
                          • You Pay: $159.95
                           
                          View all Accessories
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