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Watch: Sony FDR-AX43 Handycam with Exmor R CMOS sensor Unboxing, First Impressions, Camera Samples

In this video, we have the unboxing, first impressions, and camera samples of the new Sony FHR-AX43 Handycam with Exmor R CMOS sensor.
Watch: Sony FDR-AX43 Handycam with Exmor R CMOS sensor Unboxing, First Impressions, Camera Samples
Sony FDR-AX43

Watch: Sony FDR-AX43 Handycam with Exmor R CMOS sensor Unboxing, First Impressions, Camera Samples

The Sony FDR-AX43 features an improved 16.6MP 1/2.5 type back-illuminated Exmor CMOS Sensor with a 26.8mm wide-angle ZEISS Vario-Sonnar T lens.

It also features a new image processor called the Bionz X engine. The allows the camera to shoot at 4K at 30 fps and 1080p at up to 120fps. This also has a Balanced Optical Steadyshot with 5-axis intelligent active mode, Timelapse Capture, 20x optical zoom for 1080p mode, 30x Clear Image Zoom for 4K mode, 40x Clear Image Zoom for HD mode, improved microphone, and an easy-to-use interface. This camera also comes with 3 years warranty which is uncommon in the camera market.

It also features WiFi, XAVC5, NFC, Dolby Digital support, HDMI support, SDXC I support, Sony Memory Stick, and Apple iMovie/Final Cut Pro X support.

Out of the box, you are welcomed by some paper documents like the manual and instructions. Then you will get the power cable, HDMI cable, power brick for the charger, and a USB-A-to-micro USB cord, the battery, and the camera itself.

The Sony FDR-AX43 Handycam is not that big in person. It does not differ much in terms of size from a normal camera. On the right side, you get an adjustable strap for a more secure grip. While holding it, you can easily reach for the zoom adjustment controls, start/stop recording button, and the dedicated shutter button.

To start using the camera, you need to attach the battery to the backside of the camera. It looks weird because we rarely see a camera's battery exposed out of the body. We think that this could be improved by finding a way to integrate it inside the camera. However, we also believe that this could be a design choice to make the device smaller or for an easy-swap solution.

It has a flip-screen that automatically turns on once opened. There's a dedicated power button for it as well if you need to shut down the screen as well. Once you open the flip-screen, you will see the HDMI slot, the memory card slot, the speaker, and the playback controls. On top, it has a 5.1 channel surround sound microphone. It also has an accessories mount that can be used for external microphones, lights, and more.

On the right side, you find the micro USB port, external mic port, and NFC. At the bottom, you will find the tripod mount.

We tested the Sony FDR-AX43 Handycam and it was able to take stellar videos even in Auto Mode. The stabilization is excellent and the zoom works really as well. Overall, the picture quality is great for us. It may not have PDAF but the Contrast Autofocus is fast. Face tracking also works great. It has a pretty wide angle by default and we liked it that way.

At low light, there's an expected dip in quality. But, it is worth noting that this is better than most point and shoot cameras that we tried.

We do hope for a 4K 60fps mode in the next model. A manual control ring for focus will also be appreciated as the manual controls included are not that robust compared to other cameras.

As of the moment

For the price of PHP 49,999, the Sony FDR-AX43 Handycam is a fun camera to use. It is comfortable to hold, it is easy to use with a variety of functionalities, stabilization is superb up to 20x zoom, and the zoom function works really well. The picture quality is also promising and natural-looking. The mounts and ports included are extensive.

This is a highly recommended upgrade for content creators looking to shift from phone cameras and point-and-shoots.

What do you guys think?

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