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Sony and JVC Take Different Tacks in the High-End Camcorder Gamut

Viewfinder And Screen

Sony's color viewfinder is of excellent quality. It is movable and has a large eyepiece that isolates the eye from the surrounding light. It offers a resolution of 180,000 pixels (you can't do better than that). The JVC's viewfinder is narrower and has a lower resolution of 113,000 pixels (which are very clear however). But the GR-PD1 has its own 3.5" LCD screen, as compared with a 2.5 inch screen on the Sony. Their resolution is identical at 200,000 pixels.

The GR-PD1 and the DCR-VX2100 both have a carrying handle. The JVC's handle is smaller and can be removed. A repeat of the zoom and record controls has been incorporated into the Sony handle, which is particularly handy if you are filming in a low position. Both models have a (removable) sun-shield on the lens. A little "plus" for the Sony is that it has a shutter cover that is operated using a system of levers, which is more practical than the cap that flaps against the case when removed (JVC).

Both camcorders weigh 1.6 kg in the hand, with battery and cassette. This can soon become tiring but the bodies are well-balanced and stable. The optical image stabilizers are very effective in long focus. See for yourself.

Click here to watch the Sony DCR-VX2100 video without stabilizer.

Click here to watch the video of the JVC GR-PD1 zoom with stabilizer.
Click here to watch the video of the JVC GR-PD1 zoom without stabilizer.
Click here to watch the video of the JVC GR-PD1 zoom with stabilizer.

The design and finish are very good for both camcorders. The GR-PD1 has a black metal and matt plastic body. The DCR-VX2100 has a gray metallic satin-finish body. All this inspires confidence and makes them look tough and sturdy.