Hitachi DZ-BD7HA, World's First Blu-ray Camcorder, Gets Spanked Big-Time

We've toyed briefly with the Hitachi DZ-BD7HA HD camcorder, thought it handled rather well. But Camcorder info.com just got its hands on the $1600 shooter, the first one to record onto Blu-ray discs, and thought it sucked. Calling it "too difficult and too expensive," the smackdown of the pioneering product went on for page after page. The reviewer especially disliked its low-light performance. "If you plan on using the DZ-BD7HA exclusively in outdoor settings during the day, you're all set. If, however, you plan on shooting anywhere that is less brightly lit than a sunny day, you're in trouble."

Later, the disgruntled tester even went so far as to call its indoor shooting "a mess," decrying the camcorder's noise, blur and poor dynamic range. "Overall, we were none too pleased with the world's first Blu-ray camcorder." On the plus side, the reviewer noticed the camcorder has a resolution that's "comparable with the best of the AVCHD camcorders," but added that it can only do well in "perfect, bright light."

On the plus side, well, at least the Blu-ray disc hatch opens quickly. There's that. Another plus is the way the camcorder feels great in the hand, a characteristic that we can vouch for after our brief encounter with it. However, the reviewer didn't care for all of the hidden controls nestled within the great-looking Hitachi DZ-BD7HA, and called its manual/automatic controls "abysmal." We won't spoil the review's frank conclusion for you, you'll just have to see the savage drubbing this camcorder receives from the thorough reviewer. Ouch. [Camcorderinfo.com]