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VTech Kidizoom Plus Multimedia Digital Camera
Member Name: loveableukangel
VTech Kidizoom Plus Multimedia Digital Camera
Date: 24/03/10, updated on 26/03/10 (327 review reads)
Advantages: Designed specifically for children, Tough, Durable, Hard wearing
Disadvantages: Small memory size, Poor pixel quality, poor image size
I decided to look around online and started to compare different camera specifications and prices and thats when I discovered the V-Tech Kidizoom camera.
Designed specifically for children of 3plus V-Tech have come up with a camera that is suppose to be tough, durable and would withstand being dropped by its younger users.
Now from its ergonomical design you can tell that this camera has been designed for children. Its bold colours, big chunky design which makes it easier for the child to grip with little hands, its large brightly coloured buttons, large 1.8 tft colour screen and its double optical viewfinder which makes it so much easier to focus for those who are a little too young to grasp the concept of being able to close one eye to be able to focus makes you realise just how much thought has been put into the camera design.
Now one of the main reasons for opting for the V-Tech camera above others was because of its specifications.
The camera has:
-1.8 tft color LCD screen
-16MB of inbuilt internal memory
-Photographic and Video shooting modes
-Inbuilt Auto flash
and an inbuilt photo workshop to allow your little ones to edit, transform, add frames and add stamps to the images which they have taken.
Now children these days are beng introduced to technology at such a young age that its amazing some of the technology available out there for them and this camera is no exception.
Now before I continue I would like to bring to your attention and raise the issue that the name of this camera is a little misleading, the name 'Kidizoom', this digital camera does not have a zoom feature included at all, so if you are thinking that the camera does because of VTechs poor choice of product name it not.
The Camera itself runs off of four AA bateries,I have found that by using a decent quality battery brand and with daily use from my son that the batteries have a relatively good life and thats even with the flash activated, although I have decided to purchase some rechargabes to make it easier and cheaper in the long run.
You can find the batteries housed on the underside of the camera split between two seperate compartments. These compartments are located each side of the camera. To access these compartments and to be able to insert and remove batteries you will find yourself needing a small cross head screwdriver as there is one screw per compartment securing the batteries safely.
Now I do understand that this is a safety feature for this camera but it really can be a big pain when you find yourself needing to change the batteries when you are out for a day, that as well as needing to carry around a spare set of batteries you also find yourself needing to carry around a small cross head screwdriver to be able to get into the battery compartments to change them, not something I usually or really want to be carrying around in my handbag and Im pertty sure that some would consider it as being a lethal weapon.
Whilst Im talking about the batteries I feel that I really need to mention that if you do allow the batteries in this camera to die completely you run the risk of loosing the videos and photographs that your little one has taken and are stored on the internal memory. Now I really consider this a poor design feature, especially with the progression of technology that is out there today, you dont find this happening to general digital cameras so why should a childs camera be any different and unfortunately my three year old son does not understand the battery warning indicator so is unble to let me know that they are running low, a poor feature I feel.
The camera itself boasts a 16MB inbuilt internal memory, this allows the camera to store upto 200 photographs or 5minutes of video footage. Now being a childs camera you may believe that this is sufficient enough but believe me this is not the case, as soon as your child gets hold of the camera it is not long before you find the memory full up from the random photo taking sessions.
Now thankfully V-Tech give you the option to expand the memory, you can additionally purchase a SD card ( you can go up to 2GB in size) which then would give the child more freedom to shoot to their hearts content without the worry of the memory being used up so quickly.
Another benefit of using a SD card and changing the photo storage option to SD card means that you will not run the risk of loosing the photos and videos taken if the batteries do die as they are being stored directly onto the card itself, A great option in my eyes for saving tears.
The camera itself is pretty simple to use, enough so that my three year old son dosnt have any problems, The menu is straight forward and easy for him to use unaided. You will find picture Icons used for each catergory of the menu so this wont be a problem for those children who cannot read, its an ideal feature.
The menu includes:
The option to change between Photograph and Video shooting modes
Photo workshop - This allows the child edit photographs which they have taken, they can add frames, stamps, distort and manipulate the images and their is even an option to be able to add a 10 seconds voice tag to a photo.
Games - This camera has included three simple games for the child, Tic Tac Toe, Rotating Puzzle and Matching Pairs.
And the Memory manager which allows the changing between Internal and external memory for image and video storage, it also allows you to review the remaining space too.
Now to use the camera is extremely straightforward and simple. The Big bright orange buttons on this camera are simple and labled clearly. You will find Five buttons
and the shutter button and there is also a four way directional cursor to aid the child to scroll through the cameras menu and the photographs with ease.
When taking a photograph or shooting a video the child has two viewing options. They can either look through the double optical viewfinder or the LCD screen, to take a photograph or start shooting a video all they need to do is press the large shutter button.
You will also find that the camera has an in built auto flash so this allows photo capture in most light conditions.
To view the photographs that the child has taken you have three options:
1. you can view the photographs and videos on the camera itself by reviewing the images by either pressing up or down on the directional cursor which my son just loves to do.
2. You can connect the camera up directly to your TV set using the AV cable which is supplied
or 3. You can upload the images to your PC. This can be done by loading the supplied software and using the supplied USB cable or by removing the SD card from the camera and using the SD card slot on your PC.
Now the only problem with the later option is that the SD card slot is located in the same compartment as one of the sets of batteries, this means that you need that small cross head screwdriver again to be able to access it, although to be truthful I do prefer to upload this way as it means I can also format the SD card from the PC instead of having to delete each individual image on the camera seperately which is extremely time consuming.
Now another downside to this camera is the photograph and video quality. Photographs are only taken at a 0.3mp resolution at a size of 640 X 480 and videos at a size of 160 X 120, although the sound quality to the videos is pretty good.
Now even though it is a childrens camera I feel that this is extremely poor when you compare to the general cheaper branded digital cameras out there on the market, for roughly the same price you can get hold of a 8MP / 10MP camera but unfortunately because they dont offer the durability that this camera does its not really an option and VTech know that. This poor quality means that these images are really only to be viewed,although the camera does give you the option through the memory manager to change the pixel size of an image to 2MP from 0.3MP for the purpose only of being able to print but its still not the greatest of quality.
Taking all if this into account I think this would be an off put to older children so feel because of this its better suited for younger children as its the whole taking the image thats the fun for the child.
So the Verdict:
All in all this is a good camera from V-Tech, what it lacks in quality it makes up with durabillity. Its extremely tough and hard wearing, its withstood being bashed about and being dropped onto a paved patio by my son and still works perfectly fine.
Although most of the photographs are complete randoms and of poor quality this is still truly a great insight into seeing the world through my three year old sons eyes, It allows us to see what he sees, what interests him and he feels is important for him to photograph. It has provided hours of entertainment and fun for him since we purchased this camera and although it does have its downsides I am glad that I bought this for him, the entertainment value is well worth it.
A great camera for smaller children, this V-Tech Kidizoom camera retails at £59.99p and can be found in most stores that sell Childrens toys. You can also purchase an additional camera case designed and matching to this product which is great so that your little one can carry it around, this retails at approx £10.00p
Summary: A great digital camera designed specifically for younger children
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