Names the Best Camcorders of 2005

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Trusted online consumer guide weighs in with product ratings just in time for holiday shopping. Sony HDR-HC1 consumer high-definition camcorder tops the list as “Best Camcorder of the Year.”

When we got our hands on the Sony HDR-HC1 we were floored by the stunning beauty of the pictures it produced

2005 has been an attention-grabbing year for the camcorder industry, with technology developments that have pushed all boundaries and exceeded consumer expectations, and has been hard at work reviewing and analyzing every model on the market. To make shopping for home electronics easier this holiday season, publisher Robin Liss and announce their annual selections for the best camcorders of the year—the CamInfo Select 2005.

“The year 2005 has been one of the most eventful periods in the camcorder industry, and we have worked diligently to evaluate each model using our standardized testing methods and objective review practices to arrive at our product recommendations, the CamInfo Select 2005,” said Robin Liss, Internet entrepreneur and founder of “In the past year, we’ve seen the rapid rise of DVD camcorders and the first consumer-friendly high-definition models and non-tape-based camcorders become popular. We’ve reviewed all our testing data, debated and deliberated, and we feel confident that our choices represent the best of the best in home video. No consumers should be without this buying guide when they drive to the electronics store or log onto the web to do their shopping.”

CamInfo Select 2005’s sought-after recognition for “Camcorder of the Year” goes to the Sony HDR-HC1, the world’s first affordable high-definition camcorder that breaks new technological ground yet comes with an accessible price tag.

“When we got our hands on the Sony HDR-HC1 we were floored by the stunning beauty of the pictures it produced,” said Liss. “The colors were rich and well defined, and the sharpness was out of this world. The HDR-HC1 has finally opened up the world of HD to the masses.”

No matter how experienced the reviewers are, the novice user is never far from their minds and Sony, which has made simplicity the hallmark of its camcorders, earns their nod as the manufacturer offering the “Best Ease of Use Product Line.” “One of the biggest surprises of the year was our favorite DVD camcorder, Sony’s DCR-DVD403. The DCR-DVD403 shattered everyone’s preconceptions about DVD camcorders , delivering remarkable quality and ease of use together in a DVD cam –a package we thought we’d never see,” said Liss.

According to the staff of, it’s never been a more satisfying or exciting time to be in the market for a camcorder, with innovations across all brands. “JVC’s MiniDV GR-X5 camcorder and its sister, the flash media camcorder Everio GZ-MC500, also broke the barriers of what we thought was possible,” said Liss. “The X5 produced the best still photos we’ve seen out of a camcorder and the MC500 brought a new level of quality to the non-tape-based arena. And we can’t forget Canon’s Optura 600, which, although a later release, packed performance and quality into the matchbox style.”

Panasonic, meanwhile, lands the accolade of “Best Manual Control Product Line” as both its low- and high-end camcorders boast a huge range of shutter speeds, aperture settings, white balance, and gain control. “Once again, we saw Panasonic sweep the mid-range camcorder categories with a great camcorder line that mixes high-end features into the consumer-friendly price range,” said Liss.

The CamInfo Select 2005 winning list includes:

  •     Camcorder of the Year: Sony HDR-HC1
  •     Best Camcorder Over $2000: Sony HDR-FX1
  •     Best Camcorder Under $2000: Sony HDR-HC1
  •     Best Camcorder Under $1250: Canon Optura 600
  •     Best Camcorder Under $1000: JVC GR-X5
  •     Best Camcorder Under $800: Panasonic PV-GS250
  •     Best Camcorder Under $600: Panasonic PV-GS150
  •     Best Camcorder Under $400: Panasonic PV-GS19
  •     Best Camcorder Under $300: JVC GR-D270
  •     Best High-End DVD Camcorder: Sony DCR-DVD403
  •     Best Low-End DVD Camcorder: Panasonic VDR-M75
  •     Best Flash Media Camcorder: JVC GZ-MC500

A detailed CamInfo Select 2005 buying guide and full product reviews can be found at


Founded in 1997 by online consumer advocate Robin Liss, is the web's largest, most comprehensive publication for camcorder reviews and articles on video production and camcorder use. A specialized offshoot of, debuted in early 2005 to make it as easy as possible for novice consumers to access the best camcorder buying and usage advice available on the Internet. Together, and meet professional, amateur, and novice consumers’ needs for a convenient, reliable source of authoritative and unbiased product reviews. was named by Yahoo! Internet Life as one of the "50 Most Incredibly Useful Sites" on the Internet and landed on Forbes’ annual list of the "Best of the Web."


Jeannine Schechter

(310) 482-3461

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