Sony Unveils New Camera/Binocular Fusion

Video camera? Still camera? Binoculars? All of the above
Are they binoculars that work like a camera?  Or a camera shaped like binoculars?  Either way you want to look at them, Sony’s new Dev-3 and Dev-5 camera/binocular fusion devices sport HD video capabilities, 7 megapixel still pictures, auto-focus and image stabilization.Aimed primarily at nature enthusiasts and bird watchers, the Dev series records full 1080/60p HD video in AVCHD format, with audio, and has options for both 2D and 3D video.  The Dev-5 adds options for optical zoom mode for still images and GPS functionality.

On the inside the Dev series offers dual ¼ back-illuminated CMOS sensors, a multi-use card slot that accepts Sony Memory Sticks or SD/SDHC/SDXC type memory cards, HDMI output and headphone and microphone input jacks.

Whether you’re out on a backpacking adventure, hunting, bird watching, or just taking in the wildlife at the beach the Dev-3 and Dev-5 bring a lot to the party in one convenient package.

The advantage for bird watchers or law enforcement on stake out is being able to leave the heavy equipment behind and take one unit that will handle all the functions they’ll need without a second camera.  The NP-FV70 lnfoLITHIUM battery pack is good for up to three hours of 2D video recording.

Sony also incorporated their SteadyShot image stabilization in Still mode, which should smooth out some of the bumps.

The price tag for the first models is a little steep.  The Dev-3 MSRP will be in the neighborhood of $1,400 and the Dev-5 will come in around $2,000.  The real test will be how they perform in low light.

Sony Dev-3 side view
The Dev-5 adds electronic zoom and GPS capability