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Old Oct 8, 2009, 2:33 PM   #1
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Default Kodak Zi8 Full review: series


This is a Average recommendated Hybrid. (feeling of the cam day by day)

Cam is no longer available through Kodak.com a discontinued Model

Lowest price March 25th 2011 $69.99
There are never a perfect hybrid on the market, and rushed to the market leads to a corrective action, Kodak has corrected with firmware ver 1.06 most of the issues, especially the vertical lines people felt annoying was brought to the attention, and Kodak will continue to address and support the kZi8 Model.

Kodak 2.0 - Kodak Eastman Releases the very first Hybrid camcorder to be HD1080P, and claims its the first ever. and soon in Jan 2010 will release a newer Model 1st week in Jan 2010

Aug/sept 2009 the Kodak Zi8 hits their site, and Amazon, selling for $179.95 only at Kodak.com the cam had a discount of 15% at short periods, and today offering a 15% in the cart, and an additional 15% using the code Kodakgolf09. One must be careful how they shop at Amazon, the price will fluctuate like the gas wars, Highest price found 219.00, at Amazon.com (aqua).

As the Kodak person of marketing is out in Full force, enjoying the fun, This is what we like to see Information, all about the cam.

I will be not testing, but Showing in my eyes what the cam can do for you. The test has already passed Kodaks lab so lets enjoy the review, on with the shows:

Review, Compare, and Sample test clips. The best advice one can give.

My Full review of the Kodak Zi8 (Zed I 8) the Poor mans review:

Mid summer Aug 2009, The Kodak Zi8 on Youtube, and soon released for sale on Amazon.com for $179.95, and at Kodak.com $179.95 with a 15% discount, today an additional 15% to total the cam to 30% off making it $130.01 adding the code kodakgolf09

In house members of Kodak, showed videos, while we wait for a release date of Sept 03, 2009, the Zi8 popped up faster then expected, late Aug 2009. and reviews were showing positive feedback with high pitch sound issues. Soon after a Wobble effect , known as Rolling shutter, or Jello effect and stabilization are issues as well.

Watching videos, and keeping an eye on the camcorder/hybrid, a deal I could not pass up, ordered direct from Kodak, and order is back ordered, and shipped from TN, soon after and will arrive soon. While waiting for my shipment, I visit back to the site and have the opportunity to track my order, and find there is a Firmware patch release already. Unknown of the FW (firmware) the latest will be 1.03, can be found on Kodak.com, help center.

I take the time and I have the chance to study the on line Pdf manual, and info again, so I can better myself of the camera/hybrid. I prepare my sd cards, other cams and ready for filming.

Kodaks arrival:

you'll receive your cam Just like this. watch the short clip by clicking the picture


As I unbox the two things, as a new comer/owner of cams. I am excited, and pleased by the way Kodak packed, and protected something that shocked me, I liked the protection of the lens with plastic, but not some items just bagged and left untaped. I thought the Black was all black while it is really gun smoke Grey 60%. If I wanted a color change, all I need to do is order a battery door. cables HDMI wow, component yellow/white, tells me its a mono cam. as I feel deeper in the box I am missing a carrying bag, mini tripod and remote, but Amazed they included a metal/leather wrist strap. I guess the Jan 2010 model will have, cuts the cost down, sorry aip's remote fails to work for Kodak.. Overall I am happy with the unboxing rate 5 stars, even though the extras would have sealed the deal.

Details of cam:

Black is Gunsmoke grey. Red rasberry is ??? , Aqua blue is ???

the external details, to the Internal controls, a Simple and easy designed cam, Simplicity to Folks of All Ages. Elderly people I am sure will have no trouble using this Model.

front view back view

The front view:
Shows the battery, lens Mic, led record, and Remote sensor. the lens is recessed, and has a protective glass/plastic over the lens. no. 1 shows the flexible USB port, no. 2 SD card, and cover, no. 3 On/off/led red/green light, only shows red for charge, and off when completed. a film of plastic is left on. no. 4 the black on black indented lettering of the macro/infinity switch.
The Back view:
Shows , no. 1 the Ext Sterio Mic port video, no. 2 the Tv mini port (not 3.5mm) Hdmi port, and cover, no. 3 shows the charging port, no. 4 camera strap and plastic tripod port. no. 5 the 2.4 lttps screen and no. 6 the mouse/nav and control section of the Kodak Zi8.
Very well laid out, the lens to the side, and while in hand the controls may be just a little to low for larger hands, and a equal share for both the left, and right handed people. not a fan of thin rubber doors, and few locking points of a battery door Kodak tried their best to keep it thin. Cam by itself can be balance but unstable 90% tip over, a Neoprene cover will fix that if correctly made. My over all rating 4 stars very simple and basic.

Tv playback:

Tv playback is as easy as plugging in either mini din, or Hdmi hit play to choose in each click full, thumbnail, and folder. nav/mouse controls your play ffw speed/rew 2x-16x by clicking the play right control tab you can slo-mo 1/2,-1/16th. To delete its as easy as choosing the trash can, if you accedently delete, you'll find yourself looking for a retrival program online. Playing Any file in the Kodak, is possable. conversion or not. it is possable.

My conclusion very basic, and missing the slideshow, and Repeat,something that if we were to show a presentation at work, or at family outings, one would be highly upset. ((pmp will respond soon)) my overall rating 3 stars lack of tv playback feature, and Live feed which is highly needed.

Controls and Features: details.

As it is all about Picphonics with Kodak, a simple andeasy format. Chooseyour icon and click thecheck for the function. There are no default setting, or reset, andsome ofthe icons are missing the Image or shake hand missing, Ext mic port M.I.A. as well the face detect on the main screen. in the Tools we only see the mic level and not on the screen. October 2009 new Fw, 1.03 My Conclusion very simple to set up, but lacking icons, default, reset, whitebalance EX -2-+2, are major concerns to some. rate 3 stars there are blank spots for more info, and some presets, would win over more people like beach, snow etc

Supplied cams software and set up:
video soon to come
As no disk to be found, the Kodak Zi8 comes with the software TMI (Total Media impressions) a very basic and Powerful tool. found in the camera, like the Ext hd (hard drives) today. a way of going Green. You plug in the cam to the PC only and cam will be recognized. and youmust open thefiles and click on TME . sets up on faster machines fast, and slower machine slow. Program is very basic, and has effects, and trim, aconverter, direct Youtube, Facebook, and Vimeo upload, with a account. read up at kodak.com the Pdf manual.
Aftermarket Softwares:

Using magix.com move edtor pro 12,14, and 15 The Zi8 will fail most te timewith more then a few Files, programs shuts down, memory Allocation, 3/4 video saved, a few secs, or a few minute of clip rendered . This happens in Full 1080p 1920x1080. resolution of kodak. and saving in any file soze,

Filming in 720P I am able to get 42 segment clips in a total of 10 minutes and just before adding a title to a error. or memory that is excellent, I am sure it is the processor, and older pc's I am using a HP1070N fully maxed in memory. If you are goingto edit, its best to grab a clip repeat the clip in many times and you may make your own decision, a clip is in the post below called video and pics my conclusion. If you plan on editing with older pcs, best to think twice of hd1080p, the software provieded I am sure will work fine as it is a very basic program further commenting will be needed when loaded on my pc

Aftermarket options:

Pic 1. Are of a 1, Rubberband, 2. Ring, 3 UV filter, 4 .45 wide angle snap on lens/cover.. Temporarly on it is easy to lift up/down. no glueing at all, just presure. Wide angle not recommended.
pic 1 video pic click it

External Mic if it is a sony or clone

Battery Life:

As battery life is not quite long under a hours time, in different modes, playback etc, etc. 50 minutes average. When the camcorder gets to a low level the camera will shut the sound off of the recording, and continue to record without a Beep on/off, the LED red record light stays constant ON when recording. When in standby, under the two minutes. the camcorder will shut down with the kodak goodbye, we know the cam has a Auto shut down when nothing is touched. When filming or recording and battery isat depletion, the camcorder will shut down ONLY saying KODAK OFF. the file will be saved. After the battery is exhausted , you may or may not get the cam to turn back on it may ornot come on and you'll get the turn on, and kodak goodbye. till either, some time passed, or a powercharge. My conclusion to thebattery, each video res, etc, etc, will eat battery time. Best to conserve power by turning off the functions not needed for long d camcorder use of ON/OFF, etc, etc. rate 3 stars out of 5, for lack of Lowbattery Icon led record light constant on, and no extended battery, and battery door option.

Night Proformance

To be continued. next Post

Last edited by fishycomics; May 4, 2011 at 2:33 PM.
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Old Oct 8, 2009, 6:34 PM   #2
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Night shot proformance:
1st1080p 30fps 2nd 720P 60 fps 3rd 720P 30 fps 4th WVGA 30 fps

Night Proformance video download samples orginl format of nighttime car, shop etc.

1. hd 1080P 30 fps http://www.megaupload.com/?d=DGP7V2CV
2 hd 720P 60 fps http://www.megaupload.com/?d=9KABT3PQ
3 hd 720P 30 fps http://www.megaupload.com/?d=T58QXSCM
4 WVGA 30 fps http://www.megaupload.com/?d=PH25WX8Q
Above are Four Night shot movies, they show the proformance of the Kodak Zi8 that i have observed when filming. I was impressed, able to see clearly what shot, and when filming on a lighted Object, a reflection shown on the screen, and when played back. Angles of windows and glass showed the Infomous Red Led till angled away the camcorder. Blurriness on street lamps of multiple, and or red signs will not correctly film. Using powerful head lights on the Object produces a very lit video. With Different levels of lighting, and displays the camorders proformance works well. My Conclusion. The Low level is as important as Daytime. How you shoot, to a quick shot. we expect perfection every time. As a Pc Low budeget Economy camcorder, fully Automatic, the camcorder did just fine. If not for the Red solid led, and reflection of light. My rating 4 out of 5 stars.

Daytime Proformance:

pic 5 pic 6 pic 7 pic 8

Last edited by fishycomics; Oct 15, 2009 at 5:26 PM.
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Old Oct 8, 2009, 6:34 PM   #3
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Comparison video reviews:

As we can compare many cams to one, this is just one I felt that should have competed, in top proformance, you see the Aiptek GVS compared to the kodak, or the kodak compared to the GVS Watch the clip by clicking the Picture, and you'll get a sideby side and some other clips of the review.

Last edited by fishycomics; Nov 6, 2009 at 5:21 AM.
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Old Oct 8, 2009, 6:34 PM   #4
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1. cams Dc plug, great for a modified extended battery pack.
2. Simplicity of controls , a Picphonics way, and makes any Age person easy to use
3. the DC plug/usb can be used for car, pc, AC .
4 a true sterio external mic port
5. Auto shut off.
6. screen standby lowers for battery save.
7. record memory full, 100% memory icon lites up, if fw corrected or not.
8. Zoom from incremntal to streamline (fw 1.05)
9. Low level Recording is Possable not poor nor fair GOOD
10. Night time frames per sec adjusts from 60f-to-30f.

1. rubber covers are a poor design to flexable, in way of closeness.
2. Mouse/nav just a little sensitive over shoots the options
3. Ext mic Icon missing
4. Anti shake icon missing
5. face detection icon missing
6. Whitebalance not ofered
7. Ev -2-+2 not offered
8 storage size left. no info for cam
9. storage of cam no info on screen except when choosing video in minutes
10. Auto Off only no 1 min,3, min, or 5 min.
11. Self Timer, no way to take a self pic,not even off the video on the cam, Just film a few secs, and edit on the program
16. tv plyback index scrolling up/down will not advance to next set of X cips
17. Tv playback still no zoom.
18 tv playback on still setting button is operationable, on video it is not.
19 Live feed Zoom is not streaming it is a interval in/out
20. battery door design needs a lockingtab,will pop off
21 camera crash, no reset button, battery must be removed.
22. It is clearly said Zoom is grainulated and degrading on all firmware loads.
22 updated firmware will add spicific items the company feels needed.
23. While Usb charging LCD screen is ON..

Software: Arcsoft.
1 SlowPc's suffer the most, Mac users Do not get ANY software, Just the SIngle drive (external) Internal recognised, when card is out of cam.

3rd party magix movie edit pro 12,14,15, fewer clips , less troubles . a force to more powerful, pcs and macs when hd1080p is used. HD1080p is the hardest to correctly rennder try less clips testing other resolutions.

1. Face detect will display constant at times,
2. picsoon to come
Dead Pixal located on lower left (my unit)

not the best in the world, they wil tell you what you do not want to hear. they will try to do their job with troubleshoots, and time is always long. online is not the bet place, nor technical support either.

Last edited by fishycomics; Dec 25, 2009 at 8:04 AM.
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Old Oct 9, 2009, 6:38 PM   #5
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Picture samples:

video samples:

DL http://www.megaupload.com/?d=HH6L4JKB

Inside Low level scenerios

Night shot Movie http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DxePmR7YaRQ

FIRMWARE patches

how to downgrade the kodak,.

click me the pic

Firmware upgrade: One can go foward, and back to older firmware, as long as they have the older version filesaved, here is the older file.

fw 1.03 http://www.megaupload.com/?d=LV71XD9X fixs high pitch sound
fw 1.05 http://www.mediafire.com/?tnjnen4gnnj fixs high pitch etc
fw 1.06 http://www.mediafire.com/?mzttzynitin fixs fw 1.05 errors, and vertical lines claimed by kodak

taken apart topic http://forums.steves-digicams.com/hy...nside-zi8.html

My final Conclusion:

Last edited by fishycomics; Dec 19, 2009 at 6:47 PM.
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Old Oct 10, 2009, 12:57 PM   #6
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Fishy, I looked at your video: 809_0143.MOV

Nice color, no over-exposure, shadows a little dark, but overall quite good images.

How does the Zi8 work in low light, by comparison with the other hybrids? I would expect 1280x720 to use more of the CCD, and be better than 1920x1080 in low light, have you observed this?

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Old Oct 10, 2009, 1:38 PM   #7
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The Kodak Zi8 isa Cmos sensor 1 / 4.5–type 1.6 MP CMOS.

As the Company felt thecam did not need to include EV exposure, or whitebalance, I am sure everything is catered to Automatic, and making the Koak Zi8 the basic simple Camcorder ( not a hybrid) (vid, still, voice, web, tv playback, pmp) with less and less features to fool with. I am 24 hours of a Owner, and am doing my best to make my reviews as igo along. I always get my cams when the weather is foul (lol). I will observe, and offer my two cents, as testingwasdone at Kodak already, Kodak Corp claimes kodak.com help center has videos up that will help you decide. I I am filming in HD1080P, andwill work my way fowward to all the settings. I have a plan, a goal. and I will most likely complete when they already release th new versions out LOL. Thank you.
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Old Oct 10, 2009, 2:22 PM   #8
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I understand. I am only slowly working through all the options (including EV and White Balance) on the video of my new Panasonic ZS3 camera, with AVCHD-lite. Sometimes I think simpler might be easier when I am in a hurry, but then I love the 25mm wide angle and x12 optical zoom of this tiny camera...
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Old Oct 10, 2009, 3:15 PM   #9
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Nice review for a nice little cam. Thank you Fishy.
Best regards

Excuse my english, i know it is not the best.

Canon Powershot S95
Panasonic HDC SD-10 with sunshade.
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Old Oct 10, 2009, 5:35 PM   #10
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Yes I agree. If we'recomparing the kodak Zi8 it is the simplist camcorder to be debuted, no guessing of the controls, the cam turns on, and shows right away what video you're on and gives you the amount of memory left in minute for vide for each resolution, when on the camera not a single info of how many pics.
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