Who, you say, might be the target customer for Sony’s Digital Recording Binoculars? Your guess is as good as ours, but regardless of the device’s audience, Sony’s improvements are sure to boost that base by a bit. Like its predecessor, the DEV-5V, the DEV-50V captures stills and video, and will retail for $2,000, though the similarities end there. These binoculars are suited for far more than birdwatching — the dual-sensor design is ideal for shooting 3D, and with dual 2.4M-dot XGA OLED viewfinders, previewing and playing back three-dimensional content apparently feels quite natural. There’s a 0.8-25x zoom ratio (36.3-2,007mm 35mm equivalent), giving you quite a bit of range for viewing and recording just about any scene. The active optical SteadyShot offers twice the stability of its predecessor, and at 1 pound, 14 ounces, representing a 30-percent reduction, you’ll be holding the binocs with a bit less discomfort, too.
Curiously, the previous-generation product wasn’t rain-proof, but that’s been resolved now — a new water- and dust-resistant housing is designed to let water flow through the eyepieces without accumulation. Dual Exmor R CMOS sensors enable 20.4-megapixel still image and 1080/60p video capture, while a two-channel internal mic and audio input (and headphone) jack make it possible to add in your own audio — quite useful, considering that the source of your footage may be hundreds of feet away. Sony’s DEV-50V Digital Recording Binoculars are expected in stores for $2,000 come June. Will they be going home with you?