The Flip Ultra HD is a low cost, easy to use, and sturdy pocket sized camera. If you’re looking to become the next TMZ or a stalker this is the perfect camera.
Over the past several weeks I’ve been pushing this Flip Ultra HD to the extreme. You can see some of those tests in this spoof video. The point is that even though I dangled the Ultra HD by its wrist strap and that the camera slid across my dashboard, it still kept on recording. Try doing that with a mini-dv camera and there will be plenty of dropped frames.
Ok this is a parody of video camera tests.
I took this camera to several of my friends and each of them was amazed by its quality. For its size and weight, this camera can create some gorgeous looking videos. While the two inch screen is small, it still displays rich colors. The sound recording and playback is great. Its built in speakers are very clear and loud.
Unlike all the other Flip cameras, the Ultra HD features an HDMI port and can support two AA batteries.
But now for the negative aspects…
While the built in USB is a great and easy to use feature, if you’re on a desktop be extremely careful with the camera. Having a $200 camera dangle from my computer doesn’t seem like a good idea. Now there is a USB extension cord accessory that you can buy separately, but I think that should have been include within the box.
One thing that you do get in the box is this pouch and wrist strap. If you put on pouch when the camera is in your pocket, then it does do a good job at protecting the camera lens and screen. I still would have liked to have a lens cap so that I’m not forced to constantly put the pouch on and off.
The wrist strap that comes in the package does have some flaws. First you cannot adjust the amount of slack. It feels very easy for the wrist strap to fall off if you have skinny wrists. The other thing is that there is this plastic piece which can hit the camera. When you’re recording you have to be aware of this so that you don’t make a clanky sound.
The bottom of the camera is oddly shaped. It isn’t entirely flat so when you place it down on a flat surface the camera may shake. I haven’t had the camera fall over yet, but it’s another aspect that I have to be aware of when using the camera.
The video quality is pretty bad in low light situations. It becomes very grany. There doesn’t appear to be any image stabilization so you have to be very still if you want to record a high quality video.
There is no indication displaying how much power the rechargeable battery has left until it is about to be drained. If the battery is drained it will take up to 7 hours for the batteries to become fully charged.
There is also no way to fast forward or rewind while you’re watching a video clip on the camera.
I’d imagine that many of these issues will be fixed in future generations of the Flip camera. So the question is whether or not to invest in one right now? I’d say that it depends on your own needs. If you want to record life at any moment, this is the perfect camera. If you want to make a high quality movie, go with a different camera.
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