Summary: I just got my PV-51 out of storage to shot some video off the end of a runway while I was landing and taking off. I had forgotten what nice video it takes, even when compared to a non-tape HD cam. The only issues I have with this camera are the forementioned weak strap attachment. I had to send mine back to the factory within a year when the front tab snapped off.
Summary: I like this camcorder because of its size, its ergonomics, and its excellent zoom capabilities. I also love the fact that it can be a video camera and take pictures as a still camera too. I also love the fact that I can also buy a battery for it that will be 75% better than the battery that came with it. However I only put down a good rating because when it said used camera it should have been explained how very used this camera is.
Summary: I am using this camcorder for last 2 and half year (well, I don't use it much). And for some time facing the problem of picture geting split into several small rectangular squares, which is very difficult to watch. And recently this camcorder broke where the plastic hooks with the hand strap (you can see a very cheap plastic being used).
Summary: I purchased eight of these cameras last July 02 and they have been a huge disappointment. I have many of the precursors to this model, the pvdv-101. There are two issues with the Pvdv-51. Out of eight cameras, three of them had case breaks in the exact same spot, just where the hand strap connects to the rear section of the camera. I am a teacher and use these in a high school setting. With the first camera break, I blamed student negligence.
Summary: I bought Panasonic PVDV51D camcorder about 5 months ago and it is already giving several problems. The picture gets split into several small rectangular squares and it is very difficult to watch it. I called the panasonic service center and they said it would cost me 149$ (plus 12$ shipping and handling)flat rate service charge no matter what the problem is! ( about half the price of a new camcorder).
Summary: To tranfer video to a PC you need a Firewire port on the PC(I use the one on my sound card) and a firewire cable. I got the cable at Circuit City when I bought the camera. If you have Windows XP, Movie Maker will open by default when you connect the camera. If you want to purchase DV editing software, Pinnacle's Studio DV comes with a firewire card.
Great video but no info on what cable to use for still pics
24 January 2002
Summary: If Celia reads this review, I would like to know what specific cable you bought from Pinnacle to use to transfer still pics to the computer. I can't seem to find any info on that. Amazon has cables but I don't know which one I need. It would be helpful if on the despcription of the product, there was a despcription of the accessories and what you need, not just a list. the video is very good on this one and I find it very easy to handle.
Summary: As a beginner of camcording, I reviewed all the many cameras on the market and decided to purchase this one for its ease of use, size for traveling, and clarity of recording. I have never owned a camcorder and after one day of testing, I feel very comfortable at recording and playback. Actually, I take it everywhere and having a wonderful time using it. The only drawback is - you cannot download to a PC.
Steven E. Romer "Author -- The Textbook of th..., Amazon
3 December 2001
Summary: This camera stands out because the video quality is great, while unneeded features are left off. I don't need a color viewfinder--or a color LCD for that matter, even though this camera comes with one. I want to be able to aim it, that's all. I have a nice Olympus digital camera I bought on Amazon last year that takes PERFECT pictures and I don't need an inferior "still mode" which is commonly included with lots of these digital VIDEO cameras.