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Sony - Handycam AX53 4K Flash Memory Premium Camcorder - Black-Angle_Standard

Customer rating

Rating 4.7 out of 5 stars with 440 reviews

97%
would recommend to a friend

Pros

Cons

Customer ratings & reviews

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  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Good vid quality, poor interface for ProAm users

    Posted
    Mikeinastoria
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite Plus MemberElite Plus Member

    4K recorded video looks marvelous on playback. 1080 HD looks great on playback w smaller files ,too! Good optical zoom quality; digital zoom ...works. Wireless is has good range and works well w iPhone iPad. User ergonomics are simple and easy to locate/use. Enough said! ... If you only want to record events on the fly...like the trip to amusement park, birthdays...kids at ballgame. ProAm users... Skip this camera. No access to manual features without either touching the screen or toggling thru a list of manual options with one (focus) ring serving all function access...also requiring touching the body. The problem w even slightly touching the camera is the floating iris mechanism (boss system) works only when hand held... When on a tripod it magnifies every vibration immensely and you video will be very, very shaky for just a couple seconds until the camera figures it out...then all good again. No remote trigger port... So you won't be pressing the record/capture button unless you physically touch the buttons. Wireless only offers record/play/zoom..no other options... When you use wireless, all video and access to the functions on the camera are disabled...the video screen simply says,"using wireless"... So to change any settings you have to disconnect t wireless...all your manual settings are lost when you switch to wireless. HDMI port - only accessible when the camera is on! To turn off the camera you need to unhook everything...so you can't leave it set up. No simple way to delete content on the card...pressing delete ...when you can go into the settings to find it..will delete some items but not others...even if you select delete all. Using lowlight setting blocks usage of the gain settings. So it's either one or the other... And lowlight setting works far better than the gain controls. The list goes on.... Bottom line... This camera is a mess for ProAm users, but excellent for average simple use when shaky video and getting what the camera gives you is all you need. Did I say the video quality was excellent overall..when it's not shaky. 5 stars for everyday use. 2 stars for advanced user functionality.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Excellent Camera! Sound OK.

    Posted
    Leostriple
    • My Best Buy® MemberMember

    I've become a Sony camera fan since purchasing my first action camera, and then stepped up my game with an a7, and now the FDR AX53 video camera. I purchased the AX53 for the primary purpose of filming my son's music performances. The overall picture quality and features are top notch and user friendly. One of the most outstanding features is the BOSS stabilization feature. I was first sold on Sony's stabilization features with my action cam as it provided nice shots on rugged terrain. My first shoot with the AX53 was an outdoor solo drum performance for my son. I anchored the camera tripod to a chainlink fence prior to filming in order to stabilize the tripod. About halfway through my son's performance I noticed a group of kids shaking the fence very excitedly with the music. To my dismay, the fence shaking was frantic and forceful enough that the camera was bouncing rapidly on a vertical axis with the movement. The "bouncing" was such that the camera lens was rapidly moving up and down enough that it clearly appeared to be pointing skyward and then to the ground. I "knew" the footage was trashed because the camera shaking was so severe, and removed the camera from the tripod to hand shoot the remaining of his performance. I was SHOCKED to find the footage was steady with virtually no detectable movement from the fence shaking. In fact, the only discernible movement came from my hand shots after I removed the camera from the tripod! I was immediately grateful for the BOSS stabilization system. The only reason I gave this four stars rather than five is due to the nature of my shooting live music. The camera has a good internal mic for everyday footage, but it falls way short if you need high-quality audio typically required from shooting music. I've tried several different manual audio settings and EQing to fine tune the audio, but it just doesn't cut it for the demanding needs of music. I'm still a fan of the camera, and will figure out an external micing option that will work.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Mostly good some not too good

    Posted
    mikewinb
    • My Best Buy® Elite MemberElite Member

    This will be a fantastic camera for those who will simply capture family memorize in 4K. Picture is nice in all modes. Lowlight mode is effective ( better in HD than in 4K ... Go figure.) All cords and connections are supplied... But they are each like 3ft max... So you won't really be able to set this on a 5' tripod while connected to A/C main. This will NOT be a camera for true videographers, though. Videographers need access to all manual tools while shooting. Unfortunately, you cannot access the manual features without touching the monitor. But touching the monitor while it's on a tripod or steady surface (steady cam feature on or off same result), the floating mechanism magnifies all vibrations and the video becomes extremely shaky...) Using this wirelessly would solve that problem... Except that the wireless function only allows you to zoom and start/ stop recording (or snap the photo). No other options are available in wireless mode. What's worse, when in wireless, the video screen is not accessible. (It then only shows "using wireless". So, to access the exposure controls, you have to turn off the wireless ... Which turns off the recording.) So, again, if you simply want to point and shoot, or set it on a tripod and record without accessing any features you'll simply love this camera. Videographers... I'd have to say, this camera isn't ready for pro-am users.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Great consumer camcorder, fantastic stabilization!

    Posted
    MikeyA
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® MemberMember

    I needed a camera for some personal movie making as in vlogs and some short films. I wanted a small camera that I could run and gun with and that had great picture quality. After a bit of research, it came down to either the Sony AX-100 or this. The debate for me was between more manual controls (AX-100) vs. BOSS stabilization (AX-53). I was willing to spend the extra money for the AX-100 though the price difference is significant ($800). I chose the AX-53 because in the end it suited my needs of run and gun portability better. Because of the BOSS stabilization, most moving or walking shots are rock solid. In fact, this camera is better handheld than with a tripod. It's very easy to just point and shoot. The trade off is that this camera really should be used in "auto" most of the time. The manual controls are never fully manual. You get the camcorder equivalent of aperture and shutter priority along with manual focus and limited exposure compensation. You can do basic settings if you find a need. For example, you can set a constant 1/48 sec shutter speed to help with the "film look.". The only shortcoming i found necessary to address was to buy a separate variable ND filter for really bright sunlight. Other than that, it's full auto most of the time. The AX-100, conversely, has a better sensor, real manual control and a higher ceiling as far as picture quality,. But it's also bigger and shakier and more complicated. It's meant for a more measured style of shooting. I have a DSLR for that. The AX-53 is a capable camera with fantastic picture stabilization. The picture quality is remarkable. It's small and relatively inexpensive. There are a few creative controls but not many. That suits me just fine as i can focus my creativity on what's in front of the camera instead.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Amazing zoom! Clear video quality!

    Posted
    Teaspoon91
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® MemberMember

    My husband and I are vloggers and chose this camera over the G7x, because of the amazing zoom, the stereo sound, the wide aperture for improved low light shots, and the digital AND physical video stabilization. All of those features are fantastic on this camera. It is a little bigger than most vlogging cameras, but I would chose it again. I feel like this camera is very versital and a bang for your buck. People often ask us what kind of camera we have. The camera is also very easy to use and is great for capturing family videos as well. The camera is good enough to even be used for some professional video projects, in my opinion. If I could improve the camera, I would make a way for the physical stabilization (moving lense) to be turned off if needed. Sometimes, it can be a little jumpy during zoom shots. I would also make a way to insert/ remove the SD card without having to turn on the camera ( opening the panel to access the SD card reader turns on the camera). I would also make a switch on the outside for depth of field adjustment. You have to access the menu to adjust it. (I know this improves with their more expensive camcorders, but this camera would be just about perfect if there was better control of that.) Overall, I would definitely recommend this camera. It is wonderful, and we are thankful that we own one. It has been great for us.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Affordable 4K Canera

    Posted
    Baron
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite MemberElite Member

    I bought this camcorder for my 6 month assignment in Europe. I wanted the best possible video and pics. I liked that the size, while bigger then traditional camcorders, is smaller than all other 4K camcorders I found. Except the more expensive next Sony step up model. The other feature that attracted me is the additional color view finder - since flipout view finders can be totally washed out in strong sun. I have used the camera for two months now and the quality of the video and pics are outstanding. I am not sure that the image stabilization is actually helping though - I have a very steady hand for taking videos and don't see a difference. I don't care for the Sony Playhome Memories software, prefer to do my own organizing and editing. Also, when you try to delete files on the camera via a computer, it leaves artifacts on the camera so that when you go back to the Playback function on the camera you get an image reference but no thumbnail. I found a workaround to delete these on camera, but involves extra steps. All in all a great camcorder.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Upgrade from 1080p

    Posted
    OLED4K3D
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite Plus MemberElite Plus Member

    Compared to the six year old 1080p Sony camera I am replacing, the image quality, ease of operating and manual override controls (for focus, iris or zoom) are all significant with this 4K model and worth the upgrade. The only areas I'm disappointed are the audio quality (though this can be improved with a separate or shoe attached microphone) and the stabilization is sometimes too aggressive, introducing shakes or a sense of floating past the point where I intend a pan to stop, as it over compensates for intentional camera movements. The image stabilization has several intensity levels in the settings and I am still playing with it to get the right level given the amount of camera movement a particular scene needs. This takes some getting used to. I have a pretty steady hand or I will sometimes use a tripod even when moving the cam, so the over-reacting stabilization can be frustrating at times. I expect I will get used to it and overall I'm pleased with the upgrade.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Sony AX53 video camera

    Posted
    Revlimter
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite Plus MemberElite Plus Member

    I purchased this video camera for my wife to replace our older Sony HDR-SR11 which we enjoyed for years. We like having a separate camcorder vs using phone or ipads, The quality is better. I was not able to look at the AX53 as our local store did not have one on display. I ordered on line and took a chance. Upon unboxing I was disappointed. The build quality and feel were not close to the old AX53. The view finder protrudes from the body. When you add the battery that comes with it sticks way out and is not protected. I wonder how long it will be before it breaks. I was disappointed to find no hard drive only memory cards. It is not a big deal but the AX53 has both. I was not able to discuss the camera with an associate b/c they did not have one and they looked at me like I had 2 heads for wanting to purchase one. Having said this, the picture quality and ease of use is OUTSTANDING! it is FAR superior to our old AX53. My wife loves it. which is reason enough to buy it.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Good low light output

    Posted
    hunger
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite MemberElite Member

    I am an amateur, but I needed to graduate from the low cost camcorders because I record indoor performances for my wife's dance studio and some sports events, etc.. This camera has performed well at the events I have used it for so far. Things I like: It does a good job managing color in low light (for this price range). The sensor seems to be big enough to handle spotlights and other colored lighting situations. The anti-shake tech works good for my shaky hands. Transitions are clear in the final product. Manual focus works nicely in the few times that I tried it. All of the controls are in good and natural locations. Things that are not so good: Why does this not have an internal HD. It doesn't seem like it would cost that much more. Also, adding lens attachments is limited with this configuration.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Camcorder works great!

    Posted
    Rockman527
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® MemberMember

    I bought the camcorder to record my daughter's basketball games plus other life events. It was an open box edition but seems to be good as new. I also bought a SanDisk - Extreme 128GB SDXC memory card. With the 128GB card, the camera has worked great. However, when I used my older 8GB card, it had a couple minor issues requiring the camcorder to be restarted or have the battery removed and replaced to clear. I recommend getting the extreme versions of the memory cards to make sure to get the best quality and performance. I also would have liked to have a separate battery charger included so I would not have to plug in the camcorder each time to recharge. Overall, I love it!

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Good quality

    Posted
    Science6
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® MemberMember

    This camera produces excellent quality video. I videoed a campfire at night and the video had very good quality. It doesn't look like a daylight video but it is well light and clear. I did not use any exterior lighting, just the light of the campfire. I downloaded video into a Mac computer. The only drawback was that it needs a fairly new operating system to download. If you just plug the camera in, it doesn't recognize it. You have to go about the download differently. The still photos are very good quality also. Overall, I am very pleased with the camera's ease of operation and quality of video. I especially like the eyepiece viewfinder as I have trouble seeing the screen in bright sunlight. This makes it an excellent camera to video daytime outdoor sports.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Great Camera but miss my ax-33

    Posted
    KODA1320
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite MemberElite Member

    I sold my sony ax-33 to "upgrade" persay to this ax-53. Its lighter and definitely doesnt feel as well made in comparison to the ax-33. Its basically identical aside for having a farther zoom. Had some auto focus issues at my last outing with it at the track which is very inconvenient and had my ax-33 for years and never really experienced those but a hand full of times. Over all though its a great camera that produces great quality film and even pretty decent still photos. Just not sure it was worth the extra money and selling my ax-33 for...

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Great Product - Not as Easy as the Phone

    Posted
    VickiV
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite Plus MemberElite Plus Member

    This camcorder is of good quality. Picture quality is great when you plug it into the TV. Significant zoom capability. There are just a few features I wish it had, but not sure any camcorder does. 1) instant delete - rather than having to go to menu, pick clip, review and then delete, then more steps to get back to filming, Too many steps 2) a way to set breaks/stops between clips. They run together which is good for viewing, but not great for on the spot deleting. I've deleted the wrong clip because of this. Silencing of the videographer features doesn't always work. Have not figured out how to send videos yet.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Good, not great

    Posted
    Edward
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® MemberMember

    Video/photo quality is great. Menues are understandable but UI is mediocre. It’s kind of a pain to switch between different photo/vid settings. Would love to see more actual buttons instead of having to go to the menu for everything. Camera is a decent size and weight. But don’t expect to be able to take great action footage. Overall this is a good prosumer model that can handle a wide variety of needs. A jack of all trades and master of none.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Decent Camera

    Posted
    FilmmakerGirl
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite MemberElite Member

    This is definitely not a Red or an Arri and don’t believe people who say it’s like filming with an iPhone because that’s not true either. It’s waaay better. I like this camera because it is not complicated. You just open the door and it is ready. It is not the best in low light and you cannot retract the memory card without turning the camera on. But the battery does much better than expected. Overall great camera.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Great camera

    Posted
    Tat2ink2000
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite Plus MemberElite Plus Member

    I really enjoy this camera. It makes great videos. It's pretty sweet. Great color and HD quality. Battery life last quite a long time. Very compact. It came with no case which I think is completely cheap. I have never bought a camera with no case. Not sure what the deal is with that but for that reason. I would not recommend this camera to a friend.

    No, I would not recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    SONY 4K

    Posted
    Systems

    The Sony 4K Handycam FDR-AX53 camcorder is very good. But there is an exception. I used the camcorder on our recent trip to Hawaii. When using the camcorder outside in bright sunlight, it is almost impossible to view anything on the LCD monitor, you only see a reflection of your face. The LCD monitor is excellent indoors, but not outside. Maybe they can come up with something to reduce the glare on the LCD monitor.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Excellent so far on test shots I have done.

    Posted
    Bill
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® MemberMember

    I have been doing test shots and so far all have gone well. It might be a bit susceptible to a stuttering look when panning fast across things that are vertical. However at the speed you should pan at, it is fine. I was fully prepared to return it, but will instead replace my Canon HF G30 1080 camcorder with this one. I will miss the programmable buttons, and no lanc control, but then again I am no longer doing things as a professional videographer.

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Nice picture, clunky menu

    Posted
    Christopher
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® MemberMember

    The touch screen is great, but I often find I don’t really need to do much with the menu. It ends up kind of being a little bit in the way. But the picture is absolutely amazing. I would just warn you that the videos take up a lot of space because of the video resolution, so be prepared to store all your videos

    I would recommend this to a friend

  • Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

    Excellant Video Camera

    Posted
    RobertM
    • Verified PurchaserVerified Purchase
    • My Best Buy® Elite Plus MemberElite Plus Member

    The Sony AX53 is one of the best dedicated video cameras under $1000. The stabilization works extremely well for both HD and 4K. Battery life is better than expected and I have not found a need to buy a second battery. Videos import into Final Cut X without any issues. Only complaints are that wireless camera control could be improved and it doesn't record 4K at 60fps.

    I would recommend this to a friend