We can't say that we were too keen on Sony's DEV-5 Digital Recording Binoculars at first look -- it really is hard to get past that $2,000 price tag. But after Sony finally allowed us to shoot photos and video (albeit for a mere three minutes) at the company's CEATEC booth, we were pleasantly surprised at the image quality, at least some of the time. The images we shot were in 16:9 format, and were roughly 5.3 megapixels in size (the camera's maximum resolution is 7.1 megapixels). With only a few minutes to play around, we didn't have time to switch the menu from Japanese to English (CEATEC is held just outside Tokyo), so we had no choice but to use the default settings.
Still, images shot at f/1.8 appeared crisp, even with moderate shake (it's difficult to keep a heavy pair of binoculars steady when holding them at eye level), with accurate exposure and white balance. When zooming to 10x, however, still photos appeared very noisy, as you'll see in the gallery below. So are they worth the sky-high price tag? Well, it's safe to say that we're not ready to whip out the credit card, though they did perform better than we expected, based only on what we had initially seen through those dual high-res viewfinders. Jump past the break for an HD sample clip, or click the more coverage link below for the untouched samples.%Gallery-135896%