With JVC rolling out a set of AVCHD-capable camcorders earlier this week, Sony have unveiled their own new HD HandyCam that can record 1080i 1,920 x 1,080 AVCHD video. The HDR-CX12 measures up at around the same size as a soda can and captures direct to Memory Stick PRO Duo cards (with 4GB included). It also has Sony's Smile Shutter and face-detection technology.
Smile Shutter triggers a still frame when people are smiling, even during video recording. It can be prioritised to wait for children or adults to smile and can even be used when the HDR-CX12 is in standby; all the user need do is aim. Since you'll be expecting a decent shot after all that, Sony have picked a 10 megapixel ClearVid 1/3.13-inch CMOS sensor and coupled it with an image-stabilized Carl Zeiss Vario-Sonnar T 12x optical zoom. The HDR-CX12 can also capture 5.1 surround sound, and the built-in microphone zooms along with the lens.
Control is via a 2.7-inch LCD, and there's an assignable dial at the front which can be used to tweak focus, brightness or white balance. Sony also include the BIONZ imaging processor as seen in their DSLR range, and getting footage off the camera should be straightforward with the included docking cradle and software.
The Sony HandyCam HDR-CX12 will be available in early August priced at $900. Online pre-orders begin on June 20th.