Sony HDR-TG7 review

Sony adds built-in GPS to a slim and stylish Full HD camcorder

The Sony HDR-TG7 is, somewhat confusingly, called the TG5 over in the US

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As with satnav systems, the GPS allows the camcorder to identify where you are. Once it's worked this out you will be shown your location on a map that's displayed on the LCD. If you move around the GPS will also be able to track your progress and the map will be updated.

Taking this a step further, when you record footage or photos at a location the TG7 effectively notes this down.


You can then call the map up onscreen and watch a movie that you've made by touching on its recording location. For example, watch the film you took in Hyde Park, London, by pressing its marker point on the touchscreen LCD.

The Sony Picture Motion Browser software that's supplied with the TG7 (though it's PC only) adds another element to the GPS story as, along with basic editing options, it offers direct upload to sites such as YouTube.

And, once you've got your clip or still image online you can ever go so far as to create a map using web tools like Google Maps. For an adventure break or location-packed holiday the whole GPS enables you to create a unique and multi-tiered experience.

TG7 gps

What does remain a frustration however, is that the GPS doesn't always work out your location – and when it doesn't its great features don't function. And, a word of warning, it rarely works indoors either, so adjust your expectations accordingly!

The TG7 also boasts its fare share of more conventional camcorder features – among these is the ability to record movies and stills simultaneously, so there's no need to change recording modes. There is also a range of detection technology, including face detection and smile shutter.

tg7 charger dock

The first looks out for faces, while the second is on the lookout for toothy grins. Both are useful and reliably effective. In playback mode you can also choose a Face Index mode, and this really speeds up the searching process and you look for particular clips.