Summary: Before purchasing this or any Sony camcorder be warned that their HD file types are very hard to convert or use outside of camera playback mode. This is particularly true if you have an Apple computer. Your videos, as nice as they may be, will only import into iMovie. Importing them to Quicktime will take 30 minutes per two minutes of video. This makes the videos unusable for any purpose. I had similar frustrations on Windows based PC as well.
Summary: The camera looks nice, small, pretty easy to use and has good sound pick up. BUT.. the video in HD quality at brightest perfect sunny day light type scenario is not sharp and crisp like you would expect from a good HD quality video. Its pretty dull and very avarage looking One will not realize its in 1080P HD just by looking at the video on a monitor or HD TV unless they checkout the file's video property. To me that is a deal breaker regardless of price.
Summary: I bought this camera about 8 months ago. Since then I have recorded with it for 1 hour. The recording quality is great, mind you I am not a videographer. The issue I have is that the automatic lens cover will not open any more. I contacted Sony regarding the issue and they said that they will cover the cost of parts but not labor!!!