Saturday, 25 May 2013

Money Supermarket's Inspect-a-Gadget - Philips ESee CAM295BL HD Camcorder

As you may know, I have recently started up a Youtube channel and I know that many of you guys record videos too (including vlogs on holidays). However not everyone, including myself, can afford expensive gadgets. Imagine my surprise then, when I was offered the opportunity to try out the one below for free.

It's a full 1080p HD pocket camcorder* which I thought would be ideal for my blog videos and a possible recommendation for those of you looking for a way to capture those memorable holiday moments!

Now I can be a little bit of a technophobe, but this camera has to be the simplest thing to use ever. The start up wizard is a doddle - you enter the date, time and away you go! It has no cables so you have nothing to forget when you want to charge the unit or upload your videos. It is a camera and recorder in one and you could even edit and share your videos on this one device if you wanted to!

Now this all sounds wonderful doesn't it? But I wanted to give this camera a thorough once over to let you know if I really thought it was worth investing in. There were some pros and cons to the camcorder, as you would expect. I've broken them down below:

No wires
Perfect autofocus
Auto white balance
Easy start up wizard
Records in HD
Has smile detection
Screen turns both ways (so you can be behind or in front of the camera and still see yourself)
3 Inch touch screen
Editing and uploading** can be done on the camcorder
It's small, slim and and extremely light weight
You can choose different effects on the camera (eg, black and white, sepia)
If you plug it into a Mac, it uploads videos in seconds (I don't know how it performs on a windows machine)

You need to support the camera when you're charging/uploading via the usb connection
Charging can take up to 5 and a half hours
You can only charge it through your laptop unless you purchase a usb to mains adaptor
It does not come with a memory card or a case
You can not switch off autofocus
The autofocus can make the background wobble when filming
**You can only trim your videos on the camcorder  - unless you have a PC where you can download software to the camcorder which allows you to edit and upload videos straight to the web straight from the device.
You need to buy a HDMI cable to view videos on your TV
You have to hold the camera quite far down if you plan to use the flash or you will cover it
If you want to film videos instead of holding it and vlogging, it can be quite a pain to get it to stand up on its own
Touch screen can be a bit slow or difficult for those with bigger fingers

As you can see, it has equal pros and cons. Personally I feel that if you're looking for a more affordable starter camcorder, it's a great way to get yourself going. It does the trick and the quality is great. You don't have to spend the earth to create some lovely quality videos and pictures, so no one should feel pressured into paying the earth. I'm very happy with my little camcorder and it will definitely be making the trip on holiday with me. I've already filmed a video with this camcorder for my Youtube channel so if you would like to check that out, you can click here.

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