Sony introduced a pair of digital recording binoculars. Not only were these digital, but they were capable of recording the image and doing it in 3D. I love binoculars and even better, these high tech ones sounded like a fantastic marriage of good glass and digital technology. So I was pretty keen to try one out. I was by a Sony store recently and had the chance to try these out. What a disappointment! Thank goodness I didn’t waste nearly US$2000 on these. While they look like a pair of cool binoculars, the results were disappointing. First, looking through the lens is a pair of digital screens. But these are far from a pair of clear, bright screens. Instead, they look bright, but more like just any basic viewfinder image (like the kind you see on a digital camera screen). Compare the image to any real binoculars and it’s a major disappoint. Given that I own high-end glass from Leica and Carl Zeiss, the image was very poor.
Even worse, Zooming into the image made things worse. Image stabilization would definitely be needed and the image quality wasn’t very good. While I applaud Sony for incorporating the digital element, as well as adding 3D, which I love, the truth is this product fails. Basically, it’s a digital camcorder wrapped up in a binocular body. At more than twice the price of Sony’s camcorders, this isn’t a great value. I will wait for the next generation.