The Sony PDW-HR1 is a discontinued professional field recorder from Sony’s XDCAM HD422 series. Released in the early 2000s, it offered high-quality recording capabilities on Professional Disc media, a technology that has since been surpassed by solid-state storage solutions. While no longer in mainstream use, the PDW-HR1 holds historical significance and might be an interesting option for niche applications. Here’s a closer look at its features and considerations.

Key Features:

  • XDCAM HD422 Recording: The PDW-HR1 utilizes the XDCAM HD422 recording format, capturing footage at 50 Mbps with 1080i or 720p resolution. This delivers high-quality video with excellent color depth, catering to professional broadcast and production needs of the era.
  • Professional Disc Media: The recorder uses Professional Disc (PDisc) for storage. PDiscs offer advantages like durability and fast seek times, but they are no longer widely available and have been replaced by more affordable and higher-capacity solid-state media.
  • Dual-Layer Disc Support: The PDW-HR1 supports both single and dual-layer PDiscs, allowing for extended recording times.
  • Robust Build Quality: Built for professional use, the PDW-HR1 boasts a solid and durable construction, making it suitable for field operation.
  • Multiple Recording Modes: The recorder offers options for recording frame rates, including 24p in 1080i mode, catering to creative filming styles.
  • HD-SDI and Analog I/O: The PDW-HR1 comes equipped with HD-SDI (Serial Digital Interface) for high-definition video transmission, along with standard analog composite outputs for compatibility with older equipment.
  • 9-inch LCD Monitor: A large 9-inch LCD monitor allows for clear viewing of menus, playback, and recorded footage on the recorder itself.


  • High-quality XDCAM HD422 recording for professional productions (at the time of release).
  • Robust build for field use.
  • Multiple recording modes for flexibility.
  • Diverse input/output options for integration with various workflows.


  • Discontinued product with limited availability and potentially outdated technology.
  • Professional Disc media is no longer widely available and can be expensive.
  • Lacks features found in modern recorders, such as network connectivity, advanced monitoring tools, and support for more recent codecs.
  • Larger and heavier compared to modern solid-state recorders.

Overall :

 the Sony PDW-HR1 represents a professional field recorder from a bygone era. While it offered high-quality recording and robust functionality in its prime, the reliance on discontinued PDisc media and the lack of modern features make it a niche option today. If you require a recorder for professional broadcast with XDCAM HD422 compatibility and can secure PDisc media, the PDW-HR1 might be a consideration. However, for most users, newer solid-state recorders with broader format support and advanced features would be a better choice.