Monday, November 8, 2010

Beware the Cheap Camcorder - The Youth Version

I've written a few times on not buying super cheap camcorder. There is a difference between affordable, on-sale, clearance and cheap camcorders.

This is the tale of a sadder but wiser young man. He is giving you his opinion on why you should take the time to check out a camcorders.

There are things to watch for that can steer you away from a bad impulse purchase.

  1. If the camcorder is in bubble wrap that is a prime caution alert. It doesn't necessarily mean it is crappy but the odds increase that it may be.
  2. Look closely, is it made of metal or plastic made to look like metal? Is it really shiny, the kind of shiny that caught your attention?
  3. The more inexpensive the camcorder is the worse it will do in recording indoors. There is a good chance the outdoor recording won't be that great either.
  4. The word "interpolation" means that the camcorder uses a software program to magnify the resolution of an image or video. In reality it just makes your video look crappy. If you see that word anywhere on the package be concerned.
  5. Brand names - be careful. Many formerly well known photographic and equipment vendors license there old product names to other companies that create camcorders. Vivitar, RCA and Polaroid camcorders are made by different manufactures. I'm not saying that these are stinky camcorders. It depends on who is actually making the device. You have to check them out and their reputation.
I have purchased inexpensive camcorder that work just fine. I have also bought some stinkers that didn't last a month. A little research can go a long way to save you cash and a lost experience.


  1. Gena, I know that this isnt' the topic of your post, but I had to comment anyway - I LOVE THESE KIDS!!

    When I bought my Everio, I could not, for the life of me, figure out how to get their stupid proprietary file to open with any of my programs. I literally was in tears. I searched the internet forums, help sites, etc. for hours and finally found "YouGotJake" who was, at the time, all of maybe 13 years old.

    He had a screen capture video on YouTube about how to extract the files and open them and I cried with relief. No kidding. If it had not been for him, I'd have taken the camera back (probably should have anyway) and I'm no slouch at figuring things out. I need to go subscribe to young Mr. 123TechBoy. Thanks, as always.

  2. Ah yes, JVC Enviro - have one myself. I know the pain of which you speak.

    I'll sing the praises of SDCopy forever and a day. Converts MODs to MPGs in a heartbeat.

    I think the kids and teens are way ahead of the pros in the sense that they do have the time to figure stuff out. They also have the ability to network with each other, something that was really hard to pull off back in the day.

    Yes, you might find out a little more than you wanted to about our friend but in time his presentation skills are going to be amazing.

    Early this morning I've watched lens modification videos for web camcorders like The Flip. Teens buy wide angle lens and find ways to attach to the devices. I think the oldest one I saw might have been 17 or 18 years of age.

    I was drooling in envy.


I love actual comments. Please understand that comments will be held until I get a chance to look them over or wake up, whichever comes first.

Spam and other forms of hate speech are not welcome here. And due to the actions of spam bots and the people that love them moderation is in full effect.