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Top Sony 8mm Camcorder Models with Demo Videos

Sony 8mm Camcorder Models

Updated 16.6.2021

When we think of 8mm camcorders we usually associate them with Sony.

Although there have been 8mm camcorders from other brands, Sony was the market leader when it came to 8mm video cameras.

According to Sony, it had released a total of 6 million units of 8mm camcorders in Japan alone and 30 million units worldwide from 1985 to 1998.

In a press release in 2001, Sony announced that it had sold over 150 million units of camcorders worldwide since 1985.

Although Sony has ceased production of 8mm camcorders, many models are available for sale over Amazon, should you need one.

8mm Camcorder Buying Guide

8mm camcorders are no longer relevant in these days of HD video. But then almost every family that wanted to capture precious memories in the 1980s, 90s and the first decade of the new millenium owned one, whether a Video8, Hi-8 or Digital8 camcorder.

You may need one to replace your faulty or missing Sony 8mm camcorder model to play back and convert your 8mm tapes to digital.

With no Sony 8mm camcorder models in production, you may want to look for a used model over at eBay or Amazon.

With that in mind, take a look at the following Digital8, Hi-8 and Video8 Sony 8mm camcorder models to help you decide which would suit your needs.

Sony Digital8 Camcorders

Sony Digital8 camcorders has the advantage of playing back Video8 and Hi-8 tapes. Its other standout feature is the Firewire connection allowing you to capture video to a computer with a Firewire port without the need to install a video capture card.

Some models come up with memory stick support and, would you believe it, built-in color printer.

Digital8 Camcorder with 8mm and Hi8 Playback

The following used Digital8 camcorders with Video8 and Hi8 Playback are available for purchase.

Check out the Best Digital8 camcorders.

DCR-TRV103

This model was released in 1999 and was Sony’s first Digital8 camcorder.

Its 2.5-inch LCD screen is of the swivel type. Weighing 2 pounds (0.90kg) it supports stereo sound recording.

Infrared night video recording is one of its features. This Nightshot function can be activated when you need to shoot without any lights especially if you’re capturing nocturnal wildlife.

Digital zoom can go up to 360x. CCD is of the 1/4-inch type allowing for greater light sensitivity. Manual focus is included. Viewfinder is in black and white.

Check out the availability of the DCR-TRV103 Digital8 camcorder.

DCR-TRV120

  • 25x optical zoom/ 450x digital zoom
  • SteadyShot electronic image stabilization
  • NightShot infrared system
  • Product Dimensions – 11.7 x 10.8 x 7 inches
  • Item Weight – 5.1 pounds

DCR-TRV265E

This Digital8 camcorder doesn’t play back Video8 or Hi-8 tapes.

  • USB connectivity
  • SteadyShot electronic image stabilization
  • High stamina battery life up to 12 hours
  • 20x optical zoom
  • 990x digital zoom
  • Click to DVD
  • i.LINK (DV IN/OUT)
  • 12bit / 16 bit PCM stereo sound

DCR-TRV310

This model was introduced in the Japanese market on March 1, 1999.

  • 360x digital zoom
  • Infrared night vision video capability
  • Stereo sound recording
  • 3.5-inch swivel LCD screen
  • Product Dimensions – 4.2 x 4.2 x 8.5 inches
  • Item Weight – 2.1 pounds

DCR-TRV320

  • Memory Stick for stills
  • 25x optical, 18x digital, 450x total zoom
  • IEEE 1394 interface
  • SteadyShot digital image stabilization
  • NightShot infrared system

DCR-TRV330

  • 16:9 Recording Format
  • Image Stabiliser: Digital Image Stabiliser
  • Maximum Pixel (in Megapixel): 0.8
  • Maximum Pixels (in Megapixel): .46
  • Memory Stick: Yes
  • Remote Control: Yes
  • Sound: Stereo
  • Weight in grams: 690
  • Year of Introduction: 2000

DCR-TRV340/340E

  • LCD Screen Size 2.5 inches
  • Viewfinder Black & White
  • Effective Pixel Count 290k
  • Manual Focusing Yes
  • Optical Zoom 25 x
  • Night Imaging Super NightShot
  • Picture Stabilization – Super SteadyShot
  • Mic Input
  • Weight With Battery (ounces) 2.25
  • Width (inches) 3-11/16
  • Height (inches) 4-1/16
  • Depth (inches) 8-1/8

DCR-TRV520

  • 20x Optical Zoom
  • 450x Digital Zoom
  • MemoryStick Slot for Still Photos
  • Automatic and manual focus
  • S-Video, A/V, and IEEE-1394 ports
  • NightShot with Super NightShot and Super Laser Link
  • Record in 16:9 or 4:3
  • SteadyShot video stabilizer (for 4:3 recording mode only)
  • Sony Intelligent Accessory Shoe
  • Top-loading Tape
  • 3.5″ LCD
  • Black and white viewfinder

DCR-TRV525

  • Pulse code modulation (PCM) audio
  • Maximum CCD resolution: 460,000
  • CCD size: 0.25 inch
  • LCD screen size: 3 inche
  • Filter diameter: 37 millimeters
  • Optical zoom: 25x
  • Digital zoom: 460x
  • Programmed exposure modes: 6 modes
  • Image stabilization: Yes
  • Infrared capability: Yes
  • Still Digital camera capability: Yes
  • Memory Stick
  • 16:9 recording, demo mode, analog A/V input
  • Analog, A/V, microphone, headphone connections
  • Battery type: InfoLithium

DCR-TRV530

  • 25x optical zoom
  • 28x digital zoom
  • Image stabilization
  • 3.5 inch color LCD monitor
  • Records 640 x 480 digital stills onto included 4 MB Memory Stick
  • Uses NP-FM30 InfoLithium battery;
  • NightShot 0-Lux shooting

DCR-TRV730

  • 18x optical zoom
  • 500x digital zoom
  • Digital image stabilization
  • 2.5-inch color LCD monitor
  • Monochrome E;ectronic View Finder
  • Records 1152 x 864 digital stills with included 4 MB Memory Stick
  • Includes AC adapter, remote control, A/V cable, USB cable, CD-ROM software

DCR-TRV820

  • Built-in color printer (dye sublimation)
  • 460,000-pixel CCD
  • 4″ color viewscreen
  • Color viewfinder
  • 4MB Memory Stick
  • PCM stereo digital audio (12-bit or 16-bit)
  • Variable 25X optical zoom
  • Digital zoom up to 450X
  • SteadyShot
  • Super NightShot with 2-stage Slow Shutter
  • i.LINK digital A/V jack (IEEE 1394 compatible)
  • A/V input/output
  • S-video in/out
  • Super LaserLink supported
  • auto/manual focus
  • 14 picture effects (6 digital)
  • 4-3/4″W x 4-5/8″H x 9″D

DCR- TRV830

  • 1MP digital still camera
  • 18x optical zoom lens
  • Digital zoom max 500x
  • SteadyShot image stabilizer
  • 3.5-inch rotating LCD
  • Black-and-white viewfinder
  • Low-light recording settings
  • CD-quality digital PCM 12- or 16-bit stereo sound
  • InfoLithium battery (2-hour shooting ctime)

Digital 8 Camcorders that Don’t Support Video8 and Hi-8 Playback

Be warned though that not all Digital8 camcorders can play back Video8 and Hi-8 tapes.

The following, models, accrording to Sony are incapable of playing back Video8 and Hi-8.

DCR-TRV130

This Digital8 camcorder doesn’t play back Video8 or Hi-8 tapes.

20x optical zoom

SteadyShot image stabilization

2.5-inch color LCD monitor

Records still images onto tape

Uses Sony NP-F330 InfoLithium battery

Package Dimensions 11 x 10.2 x 9.9 inches

Item Weight 2 pounds

DCR-TRV265E

This Digital8 camcorder doesn’t play back Video8 or Hi-8 tapes.

  • USB connectivity
  • SteadyShot electronic image stabilization
  • High stamina battery life up to 12 hours
  • 20x optical zoom
  • 990x digital zoom
  • Click to DVD
  • i.LINK (DV IN/OUT)
  • 12bit / 16 bit PCM stereo sound

More Digital8 Models with No Video8 or Hi8 Playback Support

  • DCR-TRV140
  • DCR-TRV250
  • DCR-TRV260
  • DCR-TRV280

Sony Hi-8 Camcorder Models

CCD-TRV43

  • 330x digital zoom
  • Night video capability
  • 2.5-inch swivel LCD screen
  • Image stabilization
  • 6 Programmed exposure modes

CCD-TRV58

  • 20x optical, 460x digital, zoom lens
  • 2.5-inch color LCD monitor
  • Black and white Electronic View Finder
  • NP-F330 InfoLithium battery

CCD-TRV68

  • 20x optical zoom
  • 460x digital zoom
  • Image stabilization
  • 2.5-inch LCD display
  • Viewfinder type:LCD
  • Viewfinder color /black and white

CCD-TRV108

  • 20x optical zoom
  • 460x digital, zoom
  • 2.5 inch color LCD
  • Black and white Electronic View Finder
  • NightShot infrared mode (lowlight shooting).
  • NP-FM30 InfoLithium battery

CCD-TRV118

  • 20x optical zoom
  • 560x digital zoom
  • 2.5 inch color LCD
  • Black and white Electronic View Finder
  • NightShot infrared mode suitable for lowlight shooting
  • Built-in light, easy dubbing features
  • NP-FM30 InfoLithium battery
  • Battery Stamina power management system

CCD-TRV128

  • 320,000-pixel CCD
  • 20x optical zoom l
  • Digital zoom to 990x)
  • Manual focus
  • 2.5-inch rotating LCD
  • Black-and-white Electronic View Finder
  • Low-light recording settings
  • Built-in white LED light
  • NP-FM30 InfoLithium Rechargeable Battery

CCD-TRV308

  • 20x optical zoom
  • 460x digital zoom
  • SteadyShot image stabilization
  • 2.5 inch color LCD
  • Black and white Electronic View Finder
  • NightShot infrared mode for lowlight shooting
  • NP-FM30 InfoLithium battery
  • 8 picture effects
  • 6 program auto exposure modes

CCD-TRV318

  • 20x optical zoom
  • 560x digital zoom
  • SteadyShot picture stabilization system
  • 2.5 inch color LCD
  • Black and white Electronic View Finder
  • NightShot infrared mode for lowlight shooting
  • Built-in light, easy dubbing features
  • NP-FM30 InfoLithium battery
  • Battery Stamina power management system

CCD-TRV328

  • 320,000-pixel CCD
  • 20x optical zoom
  • digital zoom to 990x)
  • Manual focus
  • Image stabilizer
  • 2.5-inch rotating LCD
  • Black and white Electronic View Finder
  • Low-light recording settings
  • Built-in white LED light
  • NP-FM30 InfoLithium Rechargeable Battery

CCD-TRV428e

  • Hi8 (PAL)
  • 2.5″ SwivelScreen(TM) LCD display
  • NightShot Plus infrared recording system
  • 20X optical zoom with 990X digital enhancement
  • Built-in light
  • Image stabilization
  • InfoLithium(R) M Series Batter
  • Automatic / Manual Focus
  • Automatic White Balance
  • Preset and Custom Title Function
  • 16:9 Aspect Ratio Recording
  • Filter Diameter: 37mm
  • CCD: 360,000 Pixels (Gross), 230,000 pixels (Actual)
  • NP-FM30 Battery,
  • Software on CD-ROM

CCD-TRV608

  • 20x optical zoom
  • 560x digital zoom
  • SteadyShot image stabilization
  • 3 inch color LCD
  • Black and white Electronic View Finder
  • NightShot infrared mode for lowlight shooting
  • USB port for USB streaming to a PC

DCR-TRV830

  • Removable color printer (dye sublimation)
  • Digital8 record/play, Hi8/8mm play only
  • Digital photo mode
  • MPEG movie mode
  • 1-million pixel CCD
  • 3-1/2″ color viewscreen
  • Black and white Electronic View Finder
  • 4MB Memory Stick
  • PCM stereo digital audio (12-bit or 16-bit)
  • Variable-speed 18X optical zoom
  • Digital zoom to 500X)
  • Super SteadyShot
  • Super NightShot with 2-stage Slow Shutter
  • i.LINK jack
  • A/V input/output
  • S-video port
  • Super LaserLink-compatible
  • Auto/manual focus
  • 14 picture effects (6 digital)
  • 3-5/8″W x 4-1/8″H x 9″D
  • weight (without battery): 2.14 lbs. (without printer attachment)

Sony Video8 Camcorders

CCD-TR416

The S

  • 180x digital zoom
  • Color viewfinder
  • Infrared night video capability
  • Six programmed exposure modes

Minolta CR-8000S 8mm Camcorder

 Minolta CR-8000S  8mm Camcorder

This 8mm camcorder released in 1986 by then camera giant MInolta weighs three pounds minus the battery.

You can play back your tape through the electronic viewfinder. These were days when 8mm camcorders didn’t have an LCD screen for preview purposes.

Released under the Master Series 8, It has a 6X optical zoom capability and a MOS (Metal Oxide Semiconductor) solid state image pickup feature which helped when shooting in low-light conditions.

Minolta also released under yje Master Series 8 the CS-8200 model.

8mm Camcorder Terminology

Optical Zoom

An optical zoom is achieved by using the physical zoom lens built into the camcorder. A magnified image results when the zoom lens changes the focal length of the camcorder.

Film cameras and DSLR cameras use optical zoom. Picture quality with optical zoom is superior. The higher the optical zoom, the clearer the image when shooting faraway objects.

Digital Zoom

If you see camcorders advertised with above 100x zoom, chances are they are talking about digital zoom.

Digital zoom is also called software zoom. Here, the computer takes over from the optical zoom lens and manipulates the result. It’s the same as opening an image in a photo editor software, cropping the edges, and then enlarging the picture to give it a zoom effect.

Sony 8mm Camcorder Nightshot Function

The Nightshot function allows the camcorder to record video in low-light conditions.

This would come in handy when you’re capturing video in darkness for example capturing animals at night without distracting them with lighting.

When you turn on Nightshot, the camcorder’s CCD picks up infra-red wavelengths of light and through this is able to capture footage that otherwise wouldn’t be visible to the naked eye.

Shooting distance is limited to 10 feet or 3 meters when the Nightshot light is used.

Some camcorders come with NIghtshot and Super Nightshot function.

According to Sony, the Super Nightshot mode provides images of up to 16 times brighter than the standard Nightshot.

The shutter speed when shooting in the Super NightShot mode will change automatically depending on the brightness of the backdrop. Picture motion will be slower.

Sony camcorder nightshot function

Caution must be exercised when using the Nightshot function.

You’re not to use the NightShot mode when shooting in bright places especially outdoors during the day. Doing so may result in camcorder malfunction.

When shooting in normal conditions, don’t set your recording mode to Nightshot. This will result in color inaccuracy and the picture may turn out ‘unnatural’.

Focusing may become difficult when shooting using the Nightshot function. When this happens, switch to manual focus.

Also note that when you’re shooting in NightShot mode, you can’t use the Exposure and Program AE functions.

When recording in Super NightShot mode, you can use the Fader, Digital Effect, Exposure and Program AE functions.

Infolithium

Infolithium is Sony’s lithium-ion battery pack. The advantage of Infolithium is it has no ‘memory effect’ when you charge and recharge at whatever capacity the battery is.

infolithium battery Sony camcorder

Battery capacity is displayed in the number of minutes available. This is calculated according to the conditions the battery is operated in.

References

Sony HANDYCAM DCR-TRV525 user manual

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