I just received a first generation FLip Video camcorder and I had to make this post as soon as I could. This is certainly old news but until I actually got my hands on one of these FLip cams, I had no idea how good the product actually is. If I was to design a small, simple to use and very functional digital camera, it would certainly be much like the FLip Video camcorder. What is the big deal about the FLip Video? Let me describe the features that really stands out.
- Small in size compared to standard digital camcorders. Similar in size to many smartphones.
- Turn on and start recording in 3 seconds.
- built in clear 1.5 inch color screen.
- Built in flip USB connector therefore no cable required to transfer the video that can be misplaced.
- Can be connected directly to a TV.
- Built in software that works for the PC and the Mac.
- Easy upgrade to the latest software for free.
- Idiot proof as far taking videos and uploading to the computer.
- Designed for great low light videos.
- Runs on standard 2 AA batteries.
- May not be a big deal for many but the FLip cam also has a built in tripod mount.
These features do not sound all that exciting but when they are all combined into a very simple to use and stylishly designed package, the FLip cam stands on its own.
The problem I have always had with traditional camcorders has to be the size. I cannot put majority of the readily available models in my pocket. Unless I know ahead of time that I plan on taking a video, the camcorder will stay at home. All the still photo cameras I use can double as a video camera in a pinch but sucks in low light situations. The FLip cam is not much larger than many point and shoot cameras therefore fits in my jacket pocket nicely. I can easily take the FLip cam with me and pull out quickly for those situations that I would like to record.
The resolution of this model is 640 X 480. Numbers can be deceiving and in the case of the FLip cam the quality is surprising very good. For those that feel that 640 X 480 just does not provide a high enough level of image quality can get the FLip UltraHD which provides 1280 X 720 resolution, stereo audio recording and 2 hours of recording time. The version I have only supports 1 hour of recording time with mono audio. This is still great for the application I plan on using the FLip cam for.
You can go to www.theflip.com to check out the FLip Ultra, FLip UltraHD, Mino and the MinoHD which are slighly smaller versions.