Flip UltraHD and MinoHD third-generation camcorders
15 November 2010
Conclusion: With the Flip camcorder, what you record is what you get. There are no image adjustment options, and all footage is captured in the standard 720p HD resolution at 50 frames per second. White balance, black level calibration and exposure control is all handled automatically with no input from the user and video is output in a compressed H.264 format at an average bit rate of 8.8Mbps. But the simplification is by no means a bad thing.
Excerpt: The Good 60FPS video with image stabilization. FlipPort for extending the feature set. Still very simple to use; same for FlipShare. Good audio quality. Neutral color balance. Replaceable battery. The Bad No 1080p or optical zoom. Value is hurting compared to multi-role devices. Visible compression and blur artifacts in video. FlipPort is proprietary. Design and the new FlipPort You'd be forgiven for thinking the Ultra HD has gone unchanged on the outside.
Pros: 60FPS video with image stabilization., FlipPort for extending the feature set., Still very simple to use; same for FlipShare., Good audio quality., Neutral color balance., Replaceable battery.
Cons: No 1080p or optical zoom., Value is hurting compared to multi-role devices., Visible compression and blur artifacts in video., FlipPort is proprietary.
Conclusion: Smooth, balanced footage without tics and jerks trumps slightly-off color every time, and both the accessories and dual battery capabilities make the UltraHD 3 a far more flexible model than any in Flip’s line. But there are other pocketcams that capture higher-resolution video, megapixel stills, and endowed with more capabilities – if not the improved image stabilization or stupid-simple operation – at a similar price.
Pros: Gyro-based anti-jitter, 60 fps smoothes out footage, 16-pin FlipPort allows third-party accessories, Runs on both lithium ion cell and alkaline AAA
Cons: Less natural color, less contrast than previous generation, No still image capture, Micro HD jack, no included cable or adapter, Too expensive for too few capabilities
Excerpt: The Good HD video at a still-affordable price. Good form factor; HDMI out is new. Very user-friendly hardware and software. Much more storage; longer recording than Mino HD. Replaceable battery. The Bad No optical zoom; same image quality as before. FlipShare is quick but still limited. The Ultra HD is Pure Digital's flagship camcorder and carries 8GB of memory in addition to its high definition (720p) recording. Flip also offers the small form factor Flip Mino HD.
Pros: HD video at a still-affordable price., Good form factor; HDMI out is new., Very user-friendly hardware and software., Much more storage; longer recording than Mino HD., Replaceable battery.
Cons: No optical zoom; same image quality as before., FlipShare is quick but still limited.
Summary: And at $150, you won’t think twice about using it as you’re thundering down Splash Mountain. Our only problem with the Flip Video is that newer point-and-shoot digital cameras offer competitive video resolutions as well as superior still imaging. However, those still cameras cost at least twice as much as the Flip Video and aren’t as easy to use.
Pros: Fun and easy to use, and cheap enough that you won't be neurotic about taking it with you.
Cons: Uploading directly to the web appends a Flip Video commercial to your clip.
Excerpt: What the new 2-hour Cisco Flip UltraHD lacks in features, it makes up for in pure, elegant simplicity. The camcorder offers some slight improvements over its predecessor: It's thinner and less bulky - with a thickness of 22.3mm versus the old Flip UltraHD's 29.46mm - but still a bit too chunky to slip comfortably into any but the biggest of pockets.
New FlipPort for proprietary accessories, Smooth 60-fps frame rate and 2X digital zoom, Extremely simple and easy to use, FlipShare software for basic editing and sharing
Video quality not as good as previous models, Fixed internal memory, No still-image capture or resolution controls, Discontinued line, may have future support issues
Excerpt: Flip more or less invented the pocket camcorder market so when we heard that it was launching an updated range, we were very keen to get our mitts on them. The third-generation Flip UltraHD is similar to the last model, with its 720p video capture, although it does pack a few extra surprises.
Pros: 720p HD video capture, image stabilisation, 50fps
Cons: Pricey, focusing range starts at 1.5m, below average audio