Exmor R CMOS sensor, Sony G lens and BIONZ processor add up to Sony imaging innovation that sets the new Sony Handycam range apart

This year’s Sony Handycam line-up showcases a matchless array of Sony imaging innovation.

The new HD Sony Handycam range features several leading-edge technologies originally developed for Sony for its Alpha range of digital SLR cameras. Sony’s unique sensor, lens and image processing know-how are combined to deliver unprecedented HD picture quality – whether you’re shooting video or stills.

For the first time, range-topping AVCHD HDD Sony Handycam models (HDR-XR520VE/500VE) feature a super-sensitive Exmor R CMOS sensor. Developed exclusively by Sony, this radically new design adopts a unique ‘back illuminated’ cell structure for the Sony camcorder. The sensor has been re-engineered so photo-sensitive areas receive maximum illumination, unobscured by a grid of fine metal wires that partially blocks the pathway of incoming light in conventional designs.

This ‘flipped’ sensor layout increases the amount of illumination reaching the photo detector.  Dramatically boosting overall efficiency, Exmor R CMOS Sensor approximately 2x increase in sensitivity compared with conventional models.  This ensures brillian, low noise-images, even in low light.

This innovative sensor structure is coupled with on-chip analogue to digital (A/D) conversion, minimising the pathway of analogue signals that are more susceptible to noise than digital data.  On-chip A/D conversion thus reduces picture noise further for superb low-light performance, whether you’re shooting indoors or night scenes.  Other features of this advanced Exmore R CMOS sensor inlude a unique ClearVid array pixel layout: this allows very high resolution still recording up to a maximum 12 effective megapixels.

Also making its debut on the top-flight AVCHD HDD Sony camcorder models is Sony’s new G lens.  Complementing the new Exmore R CMOS sensor’s superb imaging performance, this premimum lens expands creative shooting possibilities.

Its advanced optical design includes low-dispersion aspheric glass elements for crisp, clear images with reduced chromatic aberration, especially at telephoto settings. Image contrast is stunning from corner to corner, while a 6-blade iris produces beautifully circular ‘bokeh’ defocus effects with point light sources.

Developed originally for the Alpha digital SLR range of cameras, the high-speed BIONZ imaging processor in HD Sony camcorder models handles massive amounts of high-resolution data from the Exmor R CMOS sensor with ease. This contributes directly to the extraordinary picture quality, quick response time and smart shooting features that characterise this year’s High Definition Sony Handycam range.

After shooting, Memory Stick Sony Handycam users can enjoy blazingly-fast data transfers from Sony Handycam to PC. Available in high-capacity 16GB (from March 2009) as well as 8GB and 4GB, Memory Stick PRO-HG HX achieves 20MB/s (read) and 15MB/s (write) transfer speeds: that’s more than 3x the performance of Memory Stick PRO DUO, and significantly faster than direct USB connection from the camcorder’s internal memory to PC. In practice, this allows transfer of a 110 min Full HD video file (approx. 15 GB) from Sony Handycam to a PC in less than 15 minutes (using PRO-HG HX and supplied USB adaptor for connection to PC).

  

NOTES TO EDITORS

Environmental Info

Sony is engaged in a constant review of its manufacturing, operational and business practices to ensure that its products are developed in an environmentally responsible way. This approach can broadly be divided into three areas:

Product

Halogenated materials can pose a risk to the environment if disposed of improperly. To minimize this risk, halogen-free flame retardants are used for certain printed circuit boards.

Process

The extended user manual is provided electronically on CD-ROM to reduce paper use.

Product packaging is made from 100% recycled paper to reduce the impact on the environment. VOC (Volatile Organic Compound) – free vegetable oil based ink is used to print the carton.

Planet

Sony is determined to lead the way as a responsible manufacturer, and as a result we are focussing on three key areas of investment:

1.      Reducing CO2 gas emissions

2.      Increasing the percentage of renewable energy  used in manufacturing facilities

For more information, please contact:

Silke Schild, Corporate Communications, Sony Europe

silke.schild@eu.sony.com / +44 (0)1932 816 507

About Sony:

Sony manufactures audio, video, communications and information technology products for the global consumer and professional markets. With its music, pictures, game and online businesses, Sony is uniquely positioned to be one of the world’s leading digital entertainment brands. Sony recorded consolidated global annual sales of EUR 55.44 billion (yen 8,871 billion) for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2008, based on an average market exchange rate for the same period of yen 160.0 to the EUR. It employs approximately 180,500 people worldwide.

In Europe, the Sony Group recorded consolidated annual sales of EUR 12.73 billion (yen 2,328 billion) for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2008. Sony Europe, headquartered at the Sony Center am Potsdamer Platz in Berlin, is responsible for the company’s European electronics business and registered consolidated sales of EUR 9.55 billion for the same period.

For more information on Sony Europe, please visit https://www.sony-europe.com andhttps://www.sony-europe.com/presscenter