OK camera when it works I would recommend to an enemy.
2 November 2014
Summary: This camcorder has the same problem as many other Optura camcorders has.....The lens stays wide open and the picture is pure white 90% of the time. It will still take pictures in near darkness. 2 of the 3 Optura camcorders I had were plagued with this same problem. the third one had a cracked circuit board where the power supply plugged in.
Summary: I bought my Canon new back in 2003 or so, and just now, almost ten years later, finally donated it to a local charity. I put in thousands of hours of recording around the world on it, and while the quality was never rock star film grade, it did a bang-up job of capturing the events I was filming. The camera was extremely durable - outlasting another video camera I bought in 2008 - and never gave me any problems in this extremely long time of heavy use.
Summary: This camera is perfect for my 18-year old. Perfect condition & works great. He can't thank me enough! I can't thank the seller enough. (Thanks again, by the way)! The advice he gave was extremely helpful as well.
Summary: Over the last two years, the camera has gotten progressively worse. It is out of warranty and the Stuck in low light mode problem has gone from once in every five startups to about 9 out of ten. The only thing that keeps me from giving it a one star rating is the large screen and general ease of use. When it is working , it is the best small camcorder I have used.
Summary: I bought this camera in early 2004 and have had no problems that other users have experienced. Maybe I just got lucky. My main use for this camera was golf swing analysis. I looked for 3 main features: Manual shutter speed of at least 1/2000, manual focus, and a larger LCD screen, because at that time I didn't have a laptop and planned on doing analysis at the driving range through the screen. The Optura fills all of those criteria perfectly.
Summary: A huge warning for anyone out there looking at this camera!! We dont use ours often and one day it started loading up and being stuck in its low light mode. this means any amount of light in the room causes it to wash out and record as blur. When I looked into this issue, it turned out that there were plenty of others out there that had the same problem with the Optura 20. It will cost you $150-300 to fix.
Summary: Avoid this product and perhaps all Canon Camcorders at any cost! The IRIS is stuck in the low light setting like many others have posted. Search CNET and other forums as well for many other reports of this problem. Canon Customer Service has been very poor in responding to this and say that this is an unknown problem! You will have to shell out almost the cost of the camcorder to get this repaired or otherwise live with a bad paper-weight.
Summary: These camcorders have an inherent manufacturing defect that apparently Canon hasn't fessed-up to. I use mine rarely. I bought a reconditioned Optura 20 several years ago. I quickly noticed that it operated only in low light mode unles it was "warm". I was using it backpacking and it would work ok when I left it in the sun or put it inside my coat, but once it got cool, the only thing I could photograph was a polar bear in a snowstorm.
Summary: I have owned this camcorder for six months now, and have found no fault with it. Before buying it, I was concerned about negative reviews regarding motor noise, low light, and body size. Fortunately, none of these has caused me a problem. The surroundings have to be completely silent to hear the motor; I have yet to have a problem with low light, and I like the feel of the body.