Consumer Reports: Handy pocket camcorders

December 20, 2011 8:16:51 PM PST
When you think of pocket camcorders, Flip is still the biggest name. But it's been discontinued. Consumer Reports just tested 16 newer ones, many that could make a great gift.

The tested pocket camcorders range in price from $100 to $300. Testers evaluated them for photo and audio quality. They're not as good as a full-sized camcorder, but some come with unique features.

The Sony Bloggie Duo has two LCD screens, one on the front and one on the back.

That lets you get great shots of yourself.

And the ViewSonic DVP5 comes with a projector, so that you can show your video. It is a neat feature, but Consumer Reports found that the picture quality was not great. And the 3D pocket camcorders Consumer Reports evaluated didn't score high enough to be recommended.

Then there's Kodak's PlaySport Zx5, which claims it's waterproof and shockproof. It earned top ratings in Consumer Reports' tests. And at $150, it's a Best Buy.

The Zoom Q3HD also got top ratings. It's pricey at $300, but it has the best audio quality of all the pocket camcorders tested.

Be aware that pocket camcorders usually don't come with much memory. Consumer Reports says you'll want around 8 gigabytes. Adding that much will cost about $20. Both of the recommended models are upgradeable.

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