My experience finding the right camcorder for me

A little over a month ago maybe it was two months ago, I was walking into Office Max and they had a display of flip cameras. They said one model recorded up to 30 minutes and one recorded up to 60 minutes and I thought to myself (and said out loud) what a stupid thing you can only record 30 mins? That would be an awfully short home video!

And then a day or two later I was thinking to myself about the camera, and it was like a lightbulb over the head moment you can easily do youtube videos with it! I asked my best friend (mind you this was WAY before Rosie got one) about it and he said well I’ll get you a camera if that is what you want but research and make sure it’s a good product before you buy one. I don’t want to just get the first thing you want I want you to make sure it’s the one you want. Doesn’t that sound like a guy thing to say? lol.

Anyway I researched for about a month and I found out the flip camera (it didn’t take me two weeks to figure this out lol I was just seeing what cameras came at what prices and what they did etc.) you need to buy AA batteries for it to work!

Some people have problems remembering to charge things, you might have a problem with the rechargeable batteries but I don’t like the concept of continuing to buy batteries for something I am planning on using constantly. Also, I found videos people have made with the flip camera on youtube and they were not too good. They were like an old VHS tape you would find from the early 90’s of home videos your parents made. I wasn’t impressed. I noticed that instead of paying 100 dollars you can spend 150 dollars (or a little less if you find a sale of course) you can get a camera with a significant difference in picture, more features, and a rechargeable Lith-ion battery.

I got a DV Camcorder at the beginning of last year but it was difficult to take the video off of the tape onto the computer. I have tapes I still haven’t taken off footage and put on my computer (I sold it to a pawn shop the end of last year for some emergency money) and I didn’t like how the footage I took off of it I had to wait and let the software record the footage. And having to buy tapes when I want to record more stuff is annoying and expensive. I think I paid 12 bucks for about 6 tapes. Each tape was about 70 mins.

But I wanted a camcorder that recorded onto a memory card. That way you don’t have to spend money continuously afterwards, you just spend money upfront and that’s it.

I have a memory card reader for the memory card for my phone, so that wasn’t something I needed to buy extra.

What model did I settle with and ask my best friend to buy for me? An Aiptek A HD High Definition Camcorder. It was 149.99 dollars when I got it but it was on sale for 139.99 so I got the 10 dollars back later. It has a rechargeable battery, it can plug into the tv (to record off of tv and to play what I have recorded onto tv) it’s small and compact, and I got a 2GB memory card for it so that it will record for about 170 mins. I could always upgrade or just get an additional 2gb memory card. It can plug into the computer via usb for power or ac. The flash is decent for taking still pictures and the pictures come out pretty good for a camcorder. The video is in MOV format actually but I convert it to mp4 (mp4’s are small sized and I saw that when I convert it to another format I get these black bars on the sides of the screen) if I want to edit it. If I don’t , then I just upload to youtube untouched.

The main flaw I have found with the camera is when I am recording in the car when my best friend is driving the words are hard to make out and it’s really noisy which is a disappointment because I wanted to film a lot of him and I and our random banter back and forth when we are driving around town doing errans. I do the best I can fixing it though in my video editing software of choice (Cyberlink powerdirector 7.0, I stopped using windows movie maker the beginning of this year, it stopped working for me for some reason) it has an audio fixing tool in there.

Then a week or two after I get this camera Rosie goes out and gets a flip camera. WTH! But I think I would feel foolish if I bought the camera that is cool,hip, and popular and I am the one stuck asking for batteries money all the time. It’s just the principal of it I think, If I am going to use something constantly (I have put up 8 movies so far onto youtube I have made with this camera and I have lots of footage I haven’t done anything with yet) then I don’t want to have to buy batteries for it to use it. Like I said the initial investment is enough, with my points about buying tapes earlier in my post.

This is the Amazon.com link for this camcorder.

http://www.amazon.com/Aiptek-720P-CMOS-Definition-Camcorder/dp/B000UO796Y/ref=pd_bbs_sr_3?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1197003377&sr=8-3

This is a video I made about the camcorder the day I got it. Every movie that I made outside of my bedroom assume it was made with this camcorder.

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2 Responses to “My experience finding the right camcorder for me”

  1. Viv Says:

    Hey! Interesting post. I got me a FlipCam and found that the quality is in reality a lot better than what the YouTube processing did with it in some cases. It’s fun and neat and I love it. Sadly, it stopped working today. 😦

    Anyway, I just wanted to say that why oh why would you buy batteries over and over? I got me a fourpack of AAs by Eneloop for about 10 EUR and I just charge them when they’re empty. They last for about 2.5 hours, so that’s a lot of filming. And when the two AAs run out, I just switch to the other charged ones and don’t need to have to go plug it somewhere to charge, which – especially in foreign countries – might be quite problematic.

  2. Goob Says:

    Thank you for replying.

    The reason why it bothers me so much is just for a little bit more money my friends can get a camcorder that they don’t need to run to the store for more batteries. And if they get AA rechargeable batteries then that is the same price or more then what I paid for my camera I just don’t like the thought of the endless investment of money into the product. Even when I am flat broke I can use my camera.

    In an electronics store you can get a kit with all sorts of adapters for American electronics. I know I saw one for people that like to travel with their ipod and want to charge it in other countries, there were a lot of different plugins. It was 15-20 dollars. But I can understand why it would just be easier to use AA batteries in that case. I am happy you are happy with your purchase even though it died recently. I heard the Flip Video Ultra is better then the regular one. It’s an upgrade.

    My camcorder is more then a camcorder, it’s a portable media device. It does film in widescreen though and that bothers me for some reason.

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