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Sharp Viewcam VL-A10

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      28.08.2001 22:45
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      Last February was my 18th birthday. I was elated when my mother handed me this funky view-cam! I had been studying media studies a-level, so I was used to using these humungous cameras that belonged to the college. Although they all worked very well, I found it difficult to keep the camera still when I was forced to use a view finder. I think that is what I like most about this view cam- it has NO view finder! All there is, is a large, clear and crisp LCD screen. This is perfect for me, providing my little nephew keeps his little sticky mits off it! You can also twist the screen around so you can film yourself. Not only is this good if you are recording a video for family who are far away, but also great for entertaining my 3 year old nephew who likes to watch himself doing stupid things! The case is an unusually attractive colour: a kind of metallic champagne colour, that you only really notice in sunlight. Whilst on the subject of sunlight, this view cam comes with a sunshade, which you clip over the lcd screen and flips open so you can still see what you are filming even in really bright light! Of course it also comes with battery + charger, shoulder strap, tv connector leads, the sun shade, diddy remote control and an easy to follow manual. You can add your own credits, super impose titles, fade in and out, connect to PC, TV and VCR and you can even record short "messages" of 30-60 seconds. Transfering the images onto video is simple, and the sound quality is fantastical! I recorded my little sisters violin recital, and it sounded just as good as did the original performance! i do not have a bad word to say about this little machine! I love it!

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      10.04.2001 01:36
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      See I am the original technophobe..Show me the latest DVD player, or Digi-Whatsit, and I have two responses either stare open-mouthed like a landed fish, or run like hell.. I can’t help it.. It’s an age thing.. Well that’s my excuse and I am sticking to it. So the reaction of my family , to the news that I was about to purchase a Camcorder, was perhaps understandable, and derisory..Yet at the same time I could see their minds working.. Mum will never get the hang of it, so it will save us buying one..Hah! Little did they know. The Sharp VL-A10H Liquid Crystal Display Camcorder was made just for techno-idiots like me..Light-weight, simple to load , and re-charge, all I need to do is point the thing in the general direction of whatever I want to film, and the A10 virtually does the rest. Well perhaps that is a bit of an exaggeration, but with built-in auto-focus, and only one button to push it seems that simple.. Supplied with battery pack, AC adaptor, power cord, infrared remote control, audio/video cable, lithium battery ,shoulder strap, lens cap, sun hood, and batteries to power the remote, all you need is an 8mm film cassette and off you go..( Well I did once my daughter had shown me how to put in the battery pack, cassette, lithium battery, and had plugged in the charger). Now little escapes my ‘artist bent’. Birds that have been feeding happily undisturbed in my garden for years, are now subjected to detailed filming. The dog can’t even have a good scratch without it being ‘recorded’ for posterity, and cries of “ get that bloody camera out of my face” can be heard emanating from my abode day and night. But do I care? Not likely. I switch to power zoom control, which can highlight a zit at 20 yards.. Those criticisms I have, may seem like nit-picking, but the battery pack does take 3 hours to charge, and then only runs for 1 hour 40 minutes. ( I a
      m going to buy the larger one which may take 6 hours to charge, but will give me 3 ½ hours of filming or playback time) and the cassette compartment is very slow opening and closing.. Also I would have happily paid a little more to have a carrying case included with the initial purchase. And I must confess I have yet to connect my Sharp to the VCR, as I refuse to face further derision by asking the kids, to show me how..I will work out which ‘scart lead’ (is that how you spell it) goes into which socket if I have to wait until hell freezes over.. Just for you Elffy. The playback quality is just great..I wasn't impressed at first, but that was because I hadn't fitted the sun guard before filming, and without it, the colour seemed very intense on the playback..However sound quality is really excellent..Probably too good, as it picks up EVERY sound, so you have to be careful if like me you sometimes use colourful language when 'your subject' isn't behaving as it should.. But I can say the playback on this Sharp is far better than that on my Dad's Panasonic, and his camcorder cost a lot more than mine..

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