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Old Aug 31, 2008, 12:59 PM   #1
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While i think Carl Zeiss lens are great I'm alsobecomingvery impressed with the Canon HF100, here is a review


My perception is that Sony's are extremely well build cameras, sound and picture quality is also great and dynamic range seem to be the best, I'm impressed with the HDR-SR11, it records onto a HDD, the negative side of that is that at high altitude this camera should not be operated, the newer model HDR-SR12 seems to have some annoying issues with the focus, but this is not the casewith the SR11, another option is the TG3/TG1, but theimage quality is not as good as the SR10/11/12.

The Canon HF100 has great sharp picture, very quick focusing, excellent qualityin low light, sound is good, and it uses external memory cards. It also offer a lot of manual override options. The dynamic range is not as great as the Sony's.

Aiptek in the other hand are budget cameras but seem to be very limited and full of annoying problems, such as bad sound quality, poor performance in low light, currently the only positive things i can see in Aiptek is low cost and very portable. I was hoping that the new AHDZ600 would overcome all of these annoying problems while remaing Low budget... but this may take some time until we see some reviews.

The Sanyo Xacti HD1010 also seems quite interesting but something about it has not impressed me.

Which of these 3 cameras would you recommendI go for?

Also can anyone recommend a US based shop/website that they have used that can sell and ship suchgoods overseas (UK/Europe), as the British Pound buys a lot more in the US then it does over here in the UK and Europe.

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Old Aug 31, 2008, 2:28 PM   #2
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The true advantage of the Canon HF100 is that it will take images in very low lighting levels when you select 24p 'Film Mode'. You can then set shutter to 12 fps (if under candlelight) or 24fps (best) or 48/60/100/whatever depending on your source and target material.

This 24p ability is what truly differetiates this camera. But you will need a good software workflow to handle the AVCHD format of Canon and the Sonys . I use AVIsynth/Virtualdub/Vegas7 on Windows.

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Old Aug 31, 2008, 3:51 PM   #3
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When Z600 comes out, it will be best Aiptek models with 200€ price tag. You really can't compare for cost effectiveness of Aiptek and more expensive models like Sony and Canon, they have more quality with more price. Both Canon HF100 and Sony HDF-SR11 are too bulky for pocket. Lets compare something which could be carried in pocket, otherwise it just doesn't make sense, becouse with quality comes of course bigger lens and bigger size. If you wan't good quality camcorder then you should buy Canon or Sony, but I am not going to pay 800€ for TG3 and I don't like Sony's special Memory Sticks which are only for Sony models.

Lets compare pocket size HD camcorders like these:

Sony TG3 800€

Canon TX1 500€

Aiptek Z600 200€

Sanyo would be great but it isn't sold here, I have to order it from abroad and I don't want to mess with that and I don't know where is nearest Sanyo support for asking help if I have some problems. Aiptek has good support and they are really trying to solve problems with their products, altought they really can't solve any problems there, maybe they just can't or they don't know how to solve them. Main reason for me to not to choose Sanyo becouse I can't return it back to store, if I have defective unit.

If you like to edit your videos and do some nice professional looking videos then you should buy real camcorder like Sony or Canon, but if you only like to store your videos and not edit much or anything then Aiptek will do just fine. Aiptek Z600 isn't going to be any kind of miracle maker, it is just like all Aiptek cameras are "simple and stupid" for every camera users out there, I think it is Aipteks policy not to make anything which too complicated for any average user. I just like it becouse it is cheap way to make videos. Many years I have considered to buy expensive camcorder but haven't just bought it yet, maybe someday I come to my senses and buy something better and more expensive.
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Old Aug 31, 2008, 4:36 PM   #4
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Lets compare pocket size HD camcorders like these:
Sony TG3 800€
Canon TX1 500€
Aiptek Z600 200€
Don't forget the Kodak V1073 (with Optical Stabilzation) ($199 new)

or the Kodak V1253 (with EIS) ($150 refurb)

I own both. They record HD in 14 Mbps DivX5. Superb video quality. Superb lenses too. Downside is that they are fully automatic, few manual adjustments. Also, the telephoto lenses lose focus when they zoom, and change zoom when they focus.

I also own a Z1012 (Optical Stabilization)($249 (at Target)), another excellent camera for capturing holiday memories in HD.

Data info on these cameras is at:

Hey, I am not affiliated with Kodak, I just use some of their products, and these haven't let me down... Unlike the HD700 (gripe, moan, whine...)

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Old Aug 31, 2008, 4:40 PM   #5
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I spent weeks comparing these models and more after buying a Digilife 1080HD and deciding to also get myself a "Real" Camcorder.

I was down to the HF100/HG10 and the JVC HD7 when I came across the Sony SR10 at the last minute and in quality comparisons it seemed to have the edge on both according to camcorderinfo.com.

It was not until I hit Jessops and got them in my mitts did I finally settle on the SR10.

the 10,000-12,000 Altitude limit (which is the same from pretty much any HDD based item due to air pressure) was not a problem for me as I really only intended to use it in the UK and the highest peak is Ben Nevis in Scotland and thats still under half of the limit, hell, even skydives are normally only 8-10k ( and I sure as hell aint gunna be doing one of them in this lifetime)

One of the features I love about the SR10 is the manual controls that make use of the touch screen, you can quickly adjust exporsure to any part of the scene and lock it there just by tapping the subject/area on the screen, the touch screen also allows you to quickly switch focus between objects and holding it there by again just tapping your finger on the point/subject.

The 240fps Smooth Slowmo feature is pretty cool, I've yet to try it out properly yet but it lets you capture 3secs either after or before pressing the rec button, the before working on a constant record buffer running on the HDD then saving the last 3 secs when you press it, no need for trying to time when it happens, just constant record and save the good bits.

An exapmle of someone else playing with the feature.

here's my top reasons for loving the SR10
  • up to 10hrs Recording on a single battery (I have the FH100 battery)[/*]
  • Manual controls[/*]
  • Touch screen for menus, manual controls and playback.[/*]
  • 15x Optical Zoom and a very usable 30x Digital (didn't start to notice artifacts till about 50x+, goes up to 180x but useless by then)[/*]
  • Cool slow mo feature.
  • Quick Dock station included for nice and easy Charging/Transfer of Video & Pics, also has AV/HD out so no need to keep pluging cables in and out of cam.[/*]
  • Excellent Audio (Does 5.1 but I only use Stereo at the mo)[/*]
  • Good in low light and also has Night vision/infra red lamp for pitch black.[/*]
  • Excellent optical stabilizer.
I realise this is heavily biased towards the SR10/11/12 as thats the one I got, but I'm sure the HF100 etc also has as many good features and that I would have been very happy with that or the JVC.

I did put some test stuff on Vimeo when I got it (obviously compressed a lot) download the original file as Vimeo tend to play with a stutter/frameskip.

Zoom clip

First day test (before I knew about most of the manual stuff)

Some more Park stuff

I still love my Digilife for it's compact/carry everywhere usage.

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Old Sep 4, 2008, 10:59 AM   #6
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Gorgeous video but then at nearly 5 times the price of an Aiptek HD camera I would be upset if it wasn't!
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Old Sep 4, 2008, 12:10 PM   #7
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thanks guys

If only there was a company in the US who would sell and ship me the canon hf100then the currency exchange works out at about half the price then buying from a shop here in Europe, i can see why you guys don't buy from Europe.
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Old Sep 5, 2008, 5:58 AM   #8
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The new Sony CX12 is out $699 based on the same chip as the SR11, but memory card only, pretty much similar. That is good quality for consumer.

I've posted somewhere around here that sr11 uses less pixels, and less dense, then the one used in the Samsung hmx-20c and Casio F1, but that information is wrong. I don't know where I got that from.

The cx12, the Samsung HMX20c, and the new Canon (24mb/s recording modes) hg20, hg21, and Hf11 are new reference cameras to compare to. The truth is that $200 cameras could be as good as those one day.
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