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I recently started videoing bands live sets using multiple cameras, so in order to get the best quality possible I needed cameras that provide rich colors while giving the best light response possible. When shooting I also use a far more expensive camera made by Sony and since I see the videos side by side during the editing process, I get to see the difference in quality. In my view this camera is almost there in terms of overall quality, but does not provide enough light response to justify its use in a semi professional environment.
How ever for capturing family events and every day use, this device excels, only enhanced by the ease of use and the simple process of exporting from mini DV to PC. It is worth noting that this does not use USB, many cameras do not and even if you find one that does the video quality will be incredibly poor; fire-wire is the standard for both standard and professional video exporting.
This may seem strange at first but this camera has night vision, its good when used closed to the subject and looks exactly like something from the movies, handy for the eager amateur film maker.
I used this for my little sister's PE coursework for skiing. Her task- to record 5 minutes of her skiing techniques. The reality- she didn't bring a camcorder with her, which made videoing her so much more difficult. We asked around and one of the hotel staff leant us this little gem.
This camera is so easy to use, it's as hard as making toast. We got it out every single time we saw a vaguely good slope, and it wasn't a chore, it was simply taking it out of your pocket and opening the screen, and pointing it at something. I was very surprised how easy it was, as I had always thought of camcorders as cumbersome, specialised things, and to take them out and use them was a hassle. This definately changed my view of them. Although the features are limited, and it is not possible to edit videos on the actual camera, it is not one of those things you leave on the shelf, as it is so easy to take out and switch on, so gets a lot more use than a more posh one.
The design is sleek and not obtrusive, and is small as well, and so it is easy to put in a bag or a pocket and take it somewhere. It is a fun camera but doesn't compromise that much quality, but is definately for the amateur videoer.
Overall, a great little camera to take out and about.